Local News
3:23 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Mecklenburg Not Part Of Bill To Allow Counties To Own Schools

Most of the state’s counties, including Mecklenburg, are no longer included in a bill that would give counties the authority to build, own, and maintain schools.  The bill passed out of a senate committee Wednesday, only giving nine counties the option to take over ownership of schools from local school districts.  Those counties include Rowan, Wake and Harnett.

Senator Ron Rabin of Harnett County said county commissions are more equipped to handle business deals. 

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Local News
5:12 pm
Tue April 23, 2013

Bond Package Won't Fund All CMS, CPCC Building Projects

The CMS school board tonight will ask the county to finance a bunch of building projects over the next few years.  It could come out to about $400 million.  Central Piedmont Community College has a similar request.  But the county is only willing to put together a bond referendum for half that amount. 

County Finance Director Dena Diorio says the county uses nine different criteria for deciding which projects get priority. 

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Charlotte Observer
10:22 am
Fri April 12, 2013

Police: Jilted North Mecklenburg High Student Tried To Kill Peer

  A North Mecklenburg High student is charged with attempted first-degree murder after authorities say he choked and punched a female classmate in a wooded area behind the school.

Huntersville police said they are still trying to determine an exact motive in the attack, which happened after classes had ended Tuesday. But police said the 14-year-old victim told them she and the suspect had been friends for about a year, and she had turned down his advances after he asked her out on a date last month.

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Local News
9:57 am
Wed April 10, 2013

More Technology, Career Specialization Drive Morrison's CMS Budget Proposal

Heath Morrison.
Credit Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

CMS Superintendent Heath Morrison has put a price tag on his vision for the district.  He wants Mecklenburg County and the state to pitch in an extra $27 million next year to help fund new programs and expand others.  Those include bringing more technology to classrooms and creating career and technical specialties at schools.  The plan also calls for 10 new positions to help schools coordinate with companies and groups wanting to help. 

WFAE’s Lisa Miller was at last night’s meeting and joins Morning Edition host Duncan McFadyen in the studio. 

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Local News
9:32 am
Wed March 27, 2013

More Magnets, K-8 Schools Part Of CMS Building Proposal

CMS proposal for building projects
Credit Lisa Miller

Charlotte Mecklenburg School officials are gearing up for a bond referendum this fall.  They laid out a plan Tuesday night to build several new schools throughout the county, including three k-8 schools and a handful of magnets.

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Local News
9:30 am
Wed March 27, 2013

New CMS Security Plan Doesn't Include Fences

Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools has dropped chain-link fences from its security plan.  Tuesday night, the school board approved a revised plan that totals  $20 million.  It includes adding 4,000 cameras to schools, installing buzzer systems with intercoms on doors, giving schools software that can do instant background checks, and creating IDs for all students and staff.  CMS had to pare its original plan down after Mecklenburg County said it would delay other construction projects.  County commissioners still have to give the district the go ahead to use the bond money. 

Local News
2:31 pm
Tue March 19, 2013

Mecklenburg Commissioners Consider Taking Over Ownership Of Schools

A bill introduced in the North Carolina senate would allow counties to take ownership of schools.  Some Mecklenburg County commissioners say they would want to own CMS buildings, if that bill passes.  That’s put CMS officials on the defensive.

This is how schools get built in North Carolina:  Since school districts don’t have taxing authority, voters approve bonds for the construction.  The county borrows the money and then passes it on to the school district. 

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Local News
10:25 am
Fri March 8, 2013

The Funding Debate: A Tale Of Two Schools

Ashley Park Pre-k through 8
Lisa Miller

Not all schools are equal when it comes to public funding. Districts across the country spend more on schools that have a large percentage of low-income students. In CMS, the funding for some schools is more than double what other schools receive for each student.

But that doesn’t necessarily translate to academic success.  WFAE set out to find out why.

To borrow from a classic, let’s call this a tale of two schools.  One is highly successful.  One is improving, but still struggling.  Tina Yulee sees the difference every day.

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7:12 pm
Wed February 27, 2013

CMS Gets Off To A Better Start With Latest Teacher Pay Plan Discussions

A couple years ago CMS was charging full steam ahead with a plan to pay teachers based partly on their students’ performance.  But it upset so many teachers and parents, the district put a halt to it.  Now, CMS officials are reviving the idea and trying hard to avoid past missteps.  They’ve asked teachers to begin working on another plan. 

WFAE’s Lisa Miller joins All Things Considered host Mark Rumsey to discuss the latest efforts.

RUMSEY: Lisa, why is CMS talking about this issue again? 

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Local News
9:28 am
Wed February 27, 2013

CMS Board Asks County For $34 Million In Security Upgrades

Charlotte Mecklenburg School officials have a $34 million capital plan to improve security at all of the district’s schools.  It includes cameras and 8 foot tall chain-link fences on all campuses.  But the plan still requires buy-in from the county commission. 

The idea is to limit the number of entry points into schools.  Think about high schools like Myers Park and West Mecklenburg that have sprawling campuses reminiscent of small colleges.  CMS Chief Operating Officer Millard House says it’s too easy for intruders to get inside.  That’s where the 8 foot high fences come in.  

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