Last week, D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray (D) accepted the new school boundaries and feeder patterns proposed by the advisory committee that has been working on the issue for the past 10 months. While some residents have legitimate concerns about the change, it may not prove as bad as they fear.
Even after the committee backed away from the more radical proposals it floated in April, the plan still managed to disgruntle many residents who found themselves rezoned to less desirable schools. The charter community is angered by the committee’s recommendation that charter schools with more affluent student bodies reserve 25 percent of their seats for “at-risk” students.
But Gray, immunized from popular disapproval by his lame-duck status, has taken a statesmanlike position. As he said in his letter to the committee, “there will never be a good time to make changes to our assignment policies.” Unless, perhaps, you’re about to leave office.
The conventional wisdom, of course, is that the next mayor will undo the whole thing. While neither of the leading candidates has weighed in specifically on the proposal Gray has adopted, both have said they would prefer to delay the boundary overhaul.
Natalie Wexler is an education writer at of Greater Greater Washington and a member of the board of the D.C. Scholars Public Charter School. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.