Photo of Farmington Woods Elementary in Cary by Hal Goodtree.
Cary, NC – The Wake County Public School System (WCPSS), the largest school system in the state of North Carolina, has ranked among the best in the country. They are looking for your input on their magnet school program now through June 1.
Magnet Options Abound in Wake
WCPSS has 31 magnet schools; 14 were honored this year with merit awards from Magnet Schools of America (MSA). In 2011, Farmington Woods Elementary in Cary was named the top magnet elementary school in the nation by MSA. Many magnet programs receive grant support from the U.S. Department of Education’s Magnet Schools Assistance Program.
Take The Survey
Parents and citizens are encouraged to offer their thoughts in an online survey on the purpose for magnet schools and the types of magnet programs they would like to see in the Wake County Public School System.
The eight-question survey is available online now through June 1, 2012.
The questionnaire is part of a periodic review WCPSS conducts to evaluate its services. The survey, which is available in English and Spanish, is part of a large-scale effort to gather community input. WCPSS also is hosting focus groups and analyzing school-by-school data. School system staff will use all of the information to make recommendations to the Wake County Board of Education later this year. (Magnet Review Timeline)
Survey participants will be asked for their opinions on how magnet programs should be used, as well as their level of interest in magnet programs such as the International Baccalaureate program, Creative Arts and Sciences, and the Montessori model, or suggest new magnet programs.
First Year of Assignment By Choice
Wake is currently testing a new assignment process which closed on April 12. For years parents in the county complained of being redistricted to accommodate growth and diversity. The school year starting Fall 2012 will be the first to test a new choice based system. This year not only can parents choose magnets, but also first and second choices for high achievement and proximity.
Magnets Offer Exclusive Elective Programs
Magnet schools offer specialized academic programs in order to attract applicants from around Wake County. The WCPSS magnet program strives to diversify schools to reduce high concentrations of poverty, as well as to maximize the use of school capacity and to provide broader educational opportunities.
New to the system this year are several schools that will be transformed to focus on STEM learning. The Board of Education was concerned when these school sites appeared to be under-enrolled. These new programs should ensure that parents will choose them despite location or history. The four new schools will join the STEM Collaborative Network: Lincoln Heights Elementary, Weatherstone Elementary, East Cary Middle, and North Garner Middle. These STEM schools will provide an integrated, cross-curricular approach to learning that explores connections among science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
Take the WCPSS Magnet School Survey
Take the quick and easy WCPSS Magnet School Survey now.