By The Commentators

Let's do the math on magnet schools

By The Commentators Posted May 25, 2012 at 11:00 am

Today I speak with you as an extremely disheartened FPG parent, but also as a concerned citizen. So much is in the news about budget cuts, teacher layoffs and barebones classrooms for our schools.

Yet our experience to keep FPG a neighborhood school has been very different.

As thoughtful board members Kelley, Streater and McElvenny asked to explore options to the magnet school conversion,  Chair Burroughs rolled her eyes and shut down these efforts.  

Is there money for a magnet school. Who cares? There are no budget worries for this project.

Can our board members get some numbers from school district staff for this project? Nope, money is no object for a magnet school.

How much will the incredible increase in bussing and traffic be? Sorry we can’t tell you.  

Who does this magnet really benefit? The children at FPG have already reduced the AYP gap by 28% in one year.  How much more would a magnet school increase this number?

Not as much of an improvement, I suspect.

What other super human effort do teachers have to do in this town? How can we treat the teachers and administrators of a treasured elementary school like this?

Why will Chair Burroughs not allow thoughtful conversation amongst her board members?

Let’s do the math.

The Orange County Board of Commissioners has recommended a $3.3 million dollar REDUCTION in its funding allocation for Chapel Hill-Carrboro Schools.

The recently approved Lee Charter school is estimated to take up to $4.5 million in district funding this year.

Dual language education costs are significantly higher per pupil then traditional classrooms, $900 per student more each year!

Is this the time to take a successful school and dismantle it for an unproven magnet option?

Shame on you, Mia Burroughs. Listen to your town and to your board. There are other options for spanish language students than dismantling FPG.

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