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The Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools board has come under heavy criticism for the way it's handled the departure of former Superintendent Heath Morrison. The board hasn't addressed the specific reasons it wanted Morrison to leave. Much of the information we do have comes from an internal report leaked to the Charlotte Observer. Acting Superintendent Ann Clark joined Charlotte Talks host Mike Collins to discuss these concerns and her goals moving forward. 

CMS Update

Nov 21, 2014
Courtesy of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

Monday, November 24, 2014

Charlotteans were blindsided recently by news of the sudden resignation of CMS Superintendent Dr. Heath Morrison. Then, we were puzzled by the various reasons we were given for the departure and some were angered by the lack of transparency by the school board about all this. They seemed reluctant to share anything about this sudden resignation despite leaks that painted Morrison as a tyrant. We talk to key players about what happened and how all of this was handled. 

Courtesy of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

A CMS high school has stopped using a worksheet that includes a racially offensive genetics question.     

A teacher at Ardrey Kell High School in south Charlotte apparently used the genetics worksheet in a biology class. Here’s the question at issue:

 "LaShamanda has a heterozygous big bootie, the dominant trait. Her man Fontavius has a small bootie which is recessive. They get married and have a baby named LaPrincess. What is the probability that LaPrincess will inherit her mama's big bootie?"

Tasnim Shamma / WFAE

New charter schools in the Charlotte area only received two-thirds of the students they expected this year. 

Nine charter schools opened this year in the Charlotte area.  Concrete Roses STEM Academy closed after the first month.  The remaining schools expected to receive about 2,400 students, but according to the state department of public instruction only 1,643 enrolled. 

Lisa Worf / WFAE

Heath Morrison and CMS have officially parted ways after two and a half years. The board met for nearly two hours in closed session Thursday and approved a separation agreement. But the deal does not include severance pay.    

Reports: CMS Superintendent Morrison To Resign

Nov 3, 2014
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

There are multiple reports that CMS superintendent Heath Morrison is going to resign.

WFAE's Lisa Worf spoke to Mark Rumsey during All Things Considered from CMS headquarters, where reporters are waiting on CMS officials to release a formal statement. Here's their conversation:

WFAE has spoken to several school board members.  They said they couldn’t comment on the situation, but they didn’t seem to be caught off guard.

School board member Ericka Ellis said she won’t say anything until Morrison makes a statement of his own.

Lisa Worf / WFAE

Mecklenburg County voters will decide next week whether to increase the county’s sales tax by a quarter cent. If approved, Mecklenburg County’s sales tax would be 7.5 percent. Most of the increase would be used to boost the salaries of CMS employees. But there’s also money in there for the library system, Central Piedmont Community College and the Arts and Science Council. 

yeungb / fl

Kenneth Wainstein says academic fraud at UNC Chapel Hill began more than 20 years ago. The former federal prosecutor detailed the findings of his eight month investigation Wednesday. It’s the latest in a series of investigations that marks one of the worst scandals in the school’s 225-year history. Jeff Tiberii of WUNC reports that for the first time, the school conceded this is an academic and an athletic issue.


There’s a profit to be made off charter schools: charter school boards can hire for-profit companies to manage schools. Many charters in North Carolina are run this way. But should the owner of a for-profit company also have a seat on the charter school board that selects the company? That was long the case with Baker Mitchell. He owns a management company that runs four charter schools in the eastern part of the state. ProPublica’s Marian Wang took a look at Mitchell and his company Roger Bacon Academy. She joins Morning Edition host Marshall Terry to discuss.


Elon University School of Law is making some big changes.  Beginning next fall, students will be able to graduate after two and a half years, instead of the standard three.  That will help shave $14,000 from what it costs to get a degree there.

The law school’s dean Luke Bierman says Elon took to heart some of the criticism of legal education and restructured its program to offer a more deliberate curriculum.   

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