What exactly does this mean? I decided to map the high performing nodes to see who gets first choice of magnet seats. It confirmed what I'd suspected--that large swaths of the county will be virtually shut out of the magnet 'lottery'.
Am I the only one who finds this disturbing? Disgusting, even? Superintendent Tata recently explained this priority, as reported by Keung Hui on the Wake Ed blog:
"The magnet program is designed to prevent the creation of high-poverty schools, at least for the Group 1 magnets," Tata said. "If you connect economic disadvantage or economic advantage with achievement and performance as the research shows, what you want to do is get higher-achieving students into the magnets schools and then as you displace students that have traditionally lower performance, you want to give them priority as I just talked about in some of the higher-performing schools. What we don't want to find ourselves in is a situation where we have the magnet program yet what we do is we invite more poverty into the magnet schools. That would seem to be a little bit counterproductive."
Does anybody really think that WCPSS staff is worried about a sudden rush of low performing or low income kids applying for magnets? Or is the fear the same as it has always been: that high performers/middle to upper income kids from low performing/high poverty schools will leave for magnets? Looks like if you live in Eastern Wake or Garner and have your sights set on a magnet, you'd better move.