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Broughton and the board

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* I could adequately argue both sides of whether Broughton High School should have kept its IB magnet program. I could go through all of the twists and turns of logic and allegiances and probably land on all of the right squares. Where I come down, though, is that whatever led the school board to put a magnet program at Broughton nine years ago is only going to happen again not even nine years from now.

But here’s my question: Absolutely nothing has changed about Broughton since the school board first decided -- unanimously -- in October to allow the school to keep the program. In breaking a 4-4 tie at the school board meeting Wednesday, chairwoman Rosa Gill said, “We have to go with the criteria, so I vote to remove the magnet program.”

The “criteria” are the same criteria used in October. Nothing there has changed. I need the five board members who changed their votes to explain themselves.

Running the Wake County Public School System is a complicated, Herculean endeavor. No doubt about that. But because there’s also no doubt that there are multitudes of parents in the county who live in a perpetual state of outrage about how the school board goes about filling our schools, the board has to be particularly thoughtful and careful in its decisions.

So why in the world would the board reinforce every stereotype there is about exactly what parents it is poised to listen to? Without adequate explanations and openness about the thought processes that led the board to change its mind in two short months over Broughton’s magnet status, what are Wake County residents left to infer? That people who live on Anderson Drive (though I understand their position. I truly do) are more important than the 600 or so magnet students already at Broughton and the hundreds of others in the pipeline at IB magnet middle schools who now are in limbo during this five-year phase-out-in process?

Was that vote in October a little “oopsie”?

When the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of students and their families are at stake in nearly every decision like this the board makes, we should be able to expect more than the debacle this appears to be. What was that vote in October exactly? What was this one?

* Disclosure: I have a ninth-grade magnet student at Broughton and an 11th-grade magnet student who IS getting the IB degree. Read my other post about the magnet system here.


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The mother who made the "birthright" comment was Shelley Rice who spearheaded this effort - and she lives closer to Sanderson than to Broughton - it seems Sanderson should be her "birthright" and not Broughton

birthright? ha!

Stop the mudslinging--Shelley never used the word birthright. It was first used in a JonesSausage post on November 25. Perhaps you filed the word away in your mind and waited for an opportunity to use it.

11/25 excerpt: "These same entitled parents whining that Mary Margaret Precious won't get to go to Broughton--as though it's her birthright....."

In response to this...our elem schools, middle schools & streets have been split in half due to this reassignment plan. We simply want our children to go to school with their next door neighbors.

More on the BOE

To Kevin Hills credit along with the other 4 who voted for the IB program to stay, the 4 individuals had valid concerns with the cost if starting a new program in this poor economy. Now with the IB program going to Millbrook, this will still drain Sanderson HS as this was SHS  complaint about Broughton when the SHS representative stood up there encouraging the board to do away with Broughtons IB status. The rezoning in this area is something I do not understand, I do know that BHS is an exemplary school for the National IBO HQ in NY for North America..it is number 1, why dismantle something that is  working. This tells the parents and schools that if you succeed, it will be taken away or if the parents have good connections and do not like the decisions that the BOE makes, (which is the case with the Mothers off Anderson road who began this), it can be taken away.  Although it was obvious to me after watching how this board conduct their meetings, that redistributing monies to other schools and bringing up thier standards to BHS is inconceivable to them,and will more than likely never happen. The real problem seems to be with the new construction and the builders not being responsible to pay for new schools in order to support the new growth, and the school boards fault for not insisting on this from the city.  If you look at almost every other state who has this kind of growth, they figured that out in the beginning, so they do not have this issue with redistributing kids every year..The "good ole boys network"  has got to stop, and the thinking that "BHS is a birthright," which was a statement from a mother in the Anderson area is no longer something other families in Wake County should tolerate. It's not a birthright it was a decision that the BOE made due to the growth, we pay our taxes as everyone else..and speaking of such..WAKE COUNTY open your wallets to the 2 million dollars we will be shelling out due to the self serving indviduals who did not get their way.

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About the blogger

Burgetta Eplin Wheeler is the associate editor of the Editorial pages, responsible for the Other Opinion page. She occasionally writes editorials. She can be reached at bwheeler@newsobserver.com or 829-4825.