Wake Ed

East Wake High changes get hearing

The public has a chance Tuesday to speak out on the Wake County school system’s plan to consolidate the campuses of East Wake High School from four small schools back to one school.

The school system has already begun reorganizing East Wake High into one school for this fall and will brainstorm ideas for a new design that would be used in the 2016-17 school year. But based on a state law covering closing and consolidation of schools, the board will hold a public hearing Tuesday on reunifying East Wake High, located in Wendell.

The hearing, part of the school board meeting that begins at 5:30 p.m., was supposed to take place Feb. 17. But the school board meeting was rescheduled and later canceled because of the inclement weather.

“There’s a statutory procedure involved that may be applicable to the East Wake situation,” school board attorney Jonathan Blumberg said. “That situation includes a public hearing and some additional steps. The district is erring on the side of caution to ensure compliance with those steps.”

Blumberg said the board will need to vote on approving the school’s reunification. He said that action would be separate from the Feb. 3 vote to discontinue the use of the names of the four small schools on the campus.

School board Vice Chairman Tom Benton said he doesn’t expect much, if any, turnout for the hearing. Benton, whose district includes most of eastern Wake, said he’s received little negative reaction to consolidating East Wake High.

Beginning in 2005, East Wake High was split into what would eventually be four small schools with the themes of health science; arts, education and global studies; engineering systems; and integrated technology.

But a school system review found the initial goals for the split had not been accomplished. Those included student performance and demographic equity across the four schools.

Hui: 919-829-4534; Twitter:@nckhui