Wake County Schools

Tony Tata
Wake County Schools

The Wake County School Board is looking for a new superintendent. The board's Democratic majority fired Tony Tata yesterday after less than two years on the job. They said little about their reasons. But Republicans blame partisan politics.

Gurnal Scott: A precariously-placed hammer over the head of Wake County Schools Superintendent Tony Tata..finally dropped.

Kevin Hill: At this time I look for a motion from the board to approve the separation agreement between the board and Mr. Tata.

Tony Tata
Wake County Schools

Wake County Schools superintendent Tony Tata may learn today if he still has a job.

Board members spent more than three hours yesterday in closed session. They made no decision. But Republican members who support Tata -- like John Tedesco -- left the meeting upset about where they were.

John Tedesco: In a closed session personnel item when I should be working on something like student achievement.

Families in Wake County will soon have to learn the particulars of yet another student assignment plan.

Our justice system is sometimes referred to as “retributive justice,” meaning when someone commits a crime, the response is to punish them. Now imagine a system where the focus is on healing, rather than punishment, one that allows the victim of a crime to experience a legal process that is interactive and engaging. That is the mission of restorative justice.

It’s a busy time for parents and students as many prepare to go back to school. It’s also an important time for decision-makers in the state’s largest school district.

Dave DeWitt: Wake County Schools have gotten plenty of attention the past few years, most of it unwanted. As the School Board has bickered over school assignment, calendar issues, and other topics, students have continued to perform above the state average. That has occurred despite the fact that Wake spends less per-pupil than the state average.

Wake County School officials are praising students and staff at 4 of the district’s elementary schools for demonstrating higher proficiency on test scores.

Dave DeWitt: The four “Renaissance Schools” are Barwell, Brentwood, Creech Road, and Wilburn. They’re located in different parts of the county, but all serve a predominately low-income population.

School districts are looking at every option to find funding for next year. This summer, a federal stimulus funding package ends, and could lead to teacher layoffs.

Dave DeWitt: Not every school district has what Wake County has a rainy day fund. Now, school board members are considering using a good chunk of the $35 million or so that’s in it to save 500 teacher jobs.

Under a new proposal from Superintendent Tony Tata, The Wake County Schools budget will shrink by $24 million next year.

Dave DeWitt: Even with the cuts, Tata says there will be no teacher layoffs. In fact, he expects to be able to give teachers a one percent raise - their first in four years.

Parents in Wake County are concerned about proposed changes to the school schedule.

Dave DeWitt: Superintendent Tony Tata says changes to the bell schedules in the district's 165 schools are necessary and would save 10 million dollars by making the bus system more efficient.

Tata Hits Milestone

Jan 30, 2012
Tony Tata

Wake Schools Superintendent Tony Tata has been on the job one year today. As Dave DeWitt reports, Tata has overcome a rocky start to earn the respect of former critics.

Dave DeWitt: The former Republican School Board majority hired Tata, and in the hyper-partisan atmosphere of the past several years, that means everything. In his introductory press conference last year, Tata tried to dispel the notion that he was there to do anyone’s bidding.