Now that the school board has begun reversing some of those policies, town leaders felt it only fair to voice their support with the same amount of zeal.
Council unanimously approved a resolution at its May 4 meeting that applauds the school board’s recent attempts to guide local public schools in a new direction.
The resolution states that council endorses the school board’s efforts “to provide greater opportunities for Wake County students to succeed, especially minority and economically disadvantaged students.” It also endorses the efforts “to institute family friendly community based school assignments and parental choice school calendars wherever possible.”
Mayor Keith Weatherly noted that Apex was greatly affected in recent years by the school board’s busing policies and its insistence on mandatory year-round schools.
Town council approved resolutions for neighborhood schools in December of 2001 and January of 2003. It also approved a resolution in September of 2006 that opposed mandatory year-round schools.
The election of several new school board members last year has resulted in efforts to change those policies. “It is time for us to stand up,” said Weatherly. “We have criticized them in the past. Now that they are doing what we ask we should support it.”
The original resolution proposed by Weatherly stated that town council supported the efforts of the “majority of the Wake County Board of Education.” Councilman Bill Jensen asked that the word “majority” be removed because it made the resolution to divisive.
“I would like it to read in manner that looks to the future (instead of) ‘we did this’ and ‘they did that,’” said Jensen. “I can see both sides (of the issue). I strongly support neighborhood schools but it all depends on how it’s implemented.”
Weatherly agreed that the word “majority” should be removed but said he wanted the resolution to remain firm in its wording.
“It should draw a distinction between what we are supporting and what we have criticized in the past,” said Weatherly.