Parents Concerned at Lowest Performing Schools in CMS

CHARLOTTE, NC — Parents at some of the lowest performing schools in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools expressed concerned on day one of the school year.

“I’m really shocked,” said Pamela McRae.

16 CMS schools have been on the state’s lowest performing list for two years.

“We’re new,” said McRae. “Today’s his first day here. None of that information was given.”

McRae moved her son to Eastway Middle School from out of state.

Also on the list: Briarwood Elementary School, Oakdale Elementary School, Cochran Collegiate Academy, Quail Hollow Middle School, Sedgefield Middle School, Community Charter School, Whitewater Middle School, Huntingtowne Farms Elementary School, Stoney Creek Elementary School, Tuckaseegee Elementary School, Turning Point Academy, Sterling Elementary School, Northeast Middle School, Crossroads Charter High School and McClintock Middle School.

“It’s really disheartening,” said McRae.

WCCB Charlotte asked Superintendent Ann Clark what’s going to help this year.

“Principals and teachers have been to specialized training focused on turnaround strategies that work with a school that is struggling,” said Superintendent Clark.

She points to the Beacon Initiative as a program that’s in its second year.

“They need more programs like that to help the children, to talk to their parents about them and get them in there,” said Christina Garcia.

Beyond training, students at some of the lowest performing schools go year-round.

Others go more school days.

The controversial student reassignment plan coming in 2017, aims to help by reducing high concentrations of poverty in some schools, placing children in schools outside their zip code.

I’d like to see her go somewhere else,” said George Smith about his daughter.

The superintendent says the board could allow students in the 14 lowest schools in that Beacon Initiative to have priority to magnet schools.

“He’s developing and getting ready for that plateau for high school, and he definitely needs the stability and the growth of the backing of, not only his home life that we give him, but a school,” said McRae.

Thursday the state releases last year’s student achievement results, and the district says it will announce what next steps will be to improve.