Lisa Worf

Assistant News Director

Lisa Worf traded the Midwest for Charlotte in 2006 to take a job at WFAE. She worked with public TV in Detroit and taught English in Austria before making her way to radio. Lisa graduated from University of Chicago with a bachelor’s degree in English. She covers several different areas with a focus on education. 

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Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools offered the first round of data last night on the impact of closing 10 schools last year.  The closures will save the district money, but it's unclear how they've affected academics. 

Two years ago, the CMS board voted to close the schools, saying it would save money and create better learning environments.  Last night, the district provided a whole slew of information to begin to see if that was the case.  Superintendent Heath Morrison pointed out the academic data isn't straight-forward. 

Lisa Miller

This is the first in a two-part series that takes a closer look at the charter school movement

Big changes are underway for charter schools in North Carolina.  Last year state lawmakers lifted the 100 school cap.  And now 25 groups are scrambling to open charters in time for next school year.  Seven are in the Charlotte area.  That same law made it easier to close a charter school by requiring they meet certain academic standards.  The state closed one charter this summer and more could close next year.  

New Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools Superintendent Heath Morrison has said improving teacher morale is one of his top priorities.  He's hired an outside consultant to survey employees about morale in schools. 

Morrison has gotten an earful about low teacher morale in the district since he arrived.  He's asked teachers to come to town hall meetings to get their perspectives.  Now, he wants all employees to take a survey that attempts to answer these questions. 

timlewisnm/Flickr

Students across North Carolina already are used to taking standardized state tests at the end of the year to measure their progress.  This school year the state is adding a couple dozen tests to measure how effective teachers are at getting students to learn.

High school students will be tested in 22 areas, many of them new, including Geometry and Chemistry.  Kids in grades four through eight will be tested in social studies as well as science most of those years. 

The state plans to use these tests to track student growth and tie that to teacher evaluations. 

Lisa Miller

The arena has emptied out.  Lawmakers, delegates and journalists are on their way home.  By early this morning, uptown Charlotte was pretty much back to normal.

On College Street just before 9 o'clock this morning, everything was open.  Cars were moving through.  There were a few big trucks and people getting on buses to go to the airport.  This was all blocked off just a few hours before.  But things were looking normal.  There just weren't many people around. 

Lisa Miller

The Democratic National Convention was promised to be a boon for local businesses.  This week convention goers have been spending money in local restaurants and stores.  But some businesses have made out a lot better than others. 

Harvest Moon Grille specializes in local food, but their clientele this week is mostly from far away. CBS Anchor Bob Schieffer is eating lunch here.  The restaurant's chef and co-owner Cassie Parsons points to another table.

"He read about us in the London Times and he wanted to check us out," she says.  

The director of Mecklenburg County's Department of Social Services has been fired.  In a news release County Manager Harry Jones Mary Wilson was terminated after "multiple meetings with the county's executive team throughout her time there."  No other details about her firing were released. Wilson led the department for four years.  Shortly after her arrival, she was criticized for hiring Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx's wife after posting the job for just one day.  During her time with DSS, one person in the department were found guilty of embezzling county money.  Jones says Wilson plans to

gbein83/Flickr

President Barack Obama is no longer planning to deliver his nomination speech to a crowd of more than 65,000 at Bank of America Stadium.  Convention organizers say they're moving the president's speech to Time Warner Cable Arena because of the threat of severe weather. 

“We have been monitoring weather forecasts closely and several reports predict thunderstorms in the area, therefore we have decided to move Thursday’s proceedings to Time Warner Cable Arena to ensure the safety and security of our delegates and convention guests,” said DNCC CEO Steve Kerrigan. 

To Drink Or Not To Drink At The DNC Media Party?

Sep 3, 2012
Tanner Latham

The Democratic National Convention means a lot of speeches.  But it also means a lot of partying as lawmakers and delegates celebrate the nomination of their candidate.  Reporters will have a busy week covering the hubbub.  But this weekend the media got an elaborate party of its own put on by Charlotte's host committee.  In an industry that's squeamish about taking gifts, this is one of the exceptions.  Here's how WFAE's Lisa Miller and Michael Tomsic navigated the ethics of the evening.

The DNC will keep many workers away from Uptown.  For those people who can't stay away, parking will be short.  But if you have a monthly parking pass chances are you'll have a space.  

Several parking garages will be closed during the DNC.  Ben Pai wasn't surprised his usual place isn't available.  After all, it's right across the street from Time Warner Arena.  But that's not a problem since his employer Bank of America asked him to work from home.  

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