For now at least, Wake will stick with transfer choices as the first option for dealing with Title I schools that fall short under No Child Left Behind
The State Board of Education hopes to hear from the feds this week whether its request to allow failing Title I schools to offer tutoring before transfers will be granted. But Wake wasn't among the 33 school districts that told state officials they'd want to take advantage of that option for the upcoming school year.
Wake school administrators will go ahead and name Aug. 5 the schools it will allow families to request transfers to attend. It will be up to the school board to approve those recommended schools or make changes.
Under No Child Left Behind, the first punishment for failing schools is to allow transfers. The next punishment in future years is to provide paid tutoring services, such as at Sylvan Learning Centers, to students.
But some No Child critics argue that the sanctions should be reversed so that tutoring is offered in the first year with transfers coming afterward.
As a result, the state board has asked for the waiver to reverse the order of sanctions.
If approved, it would apply to schools that are being punished for the first time. A school district could choose to delay the transfers to the second year.
The waiver has some opposition.
"We have heard from our network of parents in the Triangle and beyond, and they are appalled by the State Board's apparent lack of accountability in this regard," said Darrell Allison, president of Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina, in a press release. "The declining results show that school systems no longer have the luxury to pick and choose which option under No Child Left Behind to offer, but that they need to provide parents in those failing schools every available option."
Since Wake isn't joining in the state's request, it will present the transfer choices next week for nine schools that fell short for the first time. The board approved the choices earlier this month for five other schools that had failed before.