Wake Ed

More Wake County families get into their school of choice

Gabriel Lopez, right, and his mother, Maria Vazquez listen to Cris Laurens, Magnet Coordinator at Powell GT Magnet Elementary, during a Magnet Mini Fair at Farmington Woods Elementary School in Cary, N.C. January 6, 2016. This year, Wake County school officials placed 3,010 out of 5,458 magnet school applicants for the 2016-17 school year.
Gabriel Lopez, right, and his mother, Maria Vazquez listen to Cris Laurens, Magnet Coordinator at Powell GT Magnet Elementary, during a Magnet Mini Fair at Farmington Woods Elementary School in Cary, N.C. January 6, 2016. This year, Wake County school officials placed 3,010 out of 5,458 magnet school applicants for the 2016-17 school year. ehyman@newsobserver.com

More Wake County families had success this year getting into the school they applied to attend for the upcoming school year.

School district figures show that Wake placed 6,465 of 10,568 applicants, or 61.2 percent, into the school they requested for the 2016-17 school year. That compares to 5,099 out of 10,263, or 49.7 percent, who got the school they wanted for the 2015-16 school year.

Breaking this year’s application results down:

▪ Wake placed 3,010 out of 5,458 magnet school applicants, or 55.1 percent;

▪ Wake placed 382 out of 1.132 students, or 33.7 percent, into the early college application schools;

▪ Wake placed 1,827 of the 2,285 applicants for year-round schools, or 80 percent;

▪ Wake also placed 1,246 of the 1,693 applicants for traditional-calendar schools, or 73.6 percent.

Those figures don’t include students who applied for the Crossroads Flex High School. They also don’t include the Walnut Creek Elementary students who applied to attend a traditional-calendar school because it’s converting to a single-track year-round school in August.

Here are some of the highlights from this year’s applications:

▪ Athens Drive High accepted 39 of 53 applicants while Wake County’s other new magnet school, Reedy Creek Middle, placed 42 of 44 applicants;

▪ Both East Millbrook Middle and Powell Elementary saw increases in applications as they revamp their magnet themes. East Millbrook placed 48 of 63 applicants and Powell placed 30 of 83 applicants;

▪ It’s unclear how much Brooks, Joyner, Underwood and Wiley elementary schools and Martin Middle School were impacted by changes in the application process designed to attract more lower-performing students;

▪ Despite annually winning national awards, magnet school applications are down even as enrollment continues to increase in Wake. Excluding the Wake Early College of Health and Sciences, which is now not considered to be a magnet school, applications have dropped 39.8 percent since the 2009-10 school year;

▪ The concerns that Brier Creek families had raised that they’d be forced to attend a year-round middle school don’t seem to have materialized. Wake placed 208 out of 211 students who applied for traditional-calendar seats at Leesville Road Middle School, which was designated as Brier Creek’s calendar option when it was reassigned from Mills Park Middle to Pine Hollow Middle;

▪ The picture was mixed for Brier Creek Elementary families who wanted to stay on a year-round calendar when part of the base was reassigned to Pleasant Grove Elementary. Wake placed 57 of 112 year-round applicants into Brier Creek.

▪ A similar situation emerged for Holly Grove Elementary families who feared they’d lose their place in the year-round program when they were reassigned to Oakview Elementary and given Holly Springs Elementary as their new year-round option. Wake placed 88 out of 174 year-round applicants into Holly Springs Elementary.

For the statistically inclined:

Click here to view the 2016-17 magnet school results. Click here to view the 2016-17 application school results.

Click here for the 2016-17 year-round application results. Click here for the 2016-17 traditional-calendar application results.

Click here to view a spreadsheet showing applications since the 2009-10 school year for magnet schools. Click here for the same spreadsheet including the application schools.

Click here for a link to a blog post that has results dating back to the 2005-06 school year.

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