School Board votes to keep spring break intact for CMS

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Feb. 25, 2014 — Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools announced Feb. 25 that students will not have to make up school days missed on Feb. 13 and 14 due to the winter storm.

Dr. Heath E. Morrison, the district’s superintendent, presented a recommendation to the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education Feb. 25 to leave spring break intact by not making up two of the three missed days.  The Feb. 12 snow day will be made up on March 31, previously designated a teacher workday.

The district calendar for the current school year has 1,080 hours of instructional time, which is more than the 1,025 hours required by the state.  The extra hours provided some flexibility in the district’s response to the unusual weather event.

“The education of our students is always our first consideration and that is why the extra hours were built into the calendar,” Dr. Morrison said. “This decision was not an easy one but the unique nature of the February snow storm warranted a unique response.  Many of our employees and families indicated that they had made plans for the break, so we are pleased to avoid shortening spring break at this time.”

However, Dr. Morrison reminded the Board and the public that it is possible that additional severe weather could occur this year. Missing more days of school, he said, will mean losing days during spring break. District leadership does not believe giving up more instructional time is in the best interests of students, he said.

Dr. Morrison’s recommendation was unanimously approved by the Board of Education.

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Bain dedicates building with ribbon-cutting

By Leah Schmalz
bain 1 bain 2 bain 3The history of Bain Elementary School is extensive, dating back 124 years. Last Thursday the school added another chapter to that rich story with a ribbon cutting ceremony for the newly constructed school building.
Principal John LeGrand reflected further on this history, emphasizing that the vision of John Bain in the 1800s, which led to the school’s establishment, is still being upheld today. “This new building does not mean that we’re starting over,” he said. “This new building simply means that we’re continuing that tradition of excellence that was created by the people that stood before us.”
The event was held in the gymnasium and featured student involvement and leadership. Fifth grade students kicked off the ceremony by leading the pledge of allegiance and introducing the principal. Mr. Clenney’s third grade class also performed a song composed by music teacher Noreen Hofmann, complete with clapping, hand motions, and creative lyrics. “The sky’s the limit when you act Bain proud,” rapped one of the students.
CMS Board of Education District 6 member Amelia Stinson-Wesley touched on the legacy of the school, noting that commissioner Mickey Ellington’s family has attended the school for five generations. “I’m really excited about having this new incarnation of Bain here,” she said. “With the technology in this building, with the talent and the passion of all of our teachers, with the drive and dedication of each of you that are students here, it will all guide us to the next generation of Bain Bobcats.”
Dr. Heath Morrison, the superintendent of Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools, spoke about the future of the students, using the analogy of a basketball game. “Here at Bain you have all of the things that you need to make sure that you’re going to be in position the rest of your life to take that winning shot,” he said. He also thanked the principals, teachers, support staff, community members, and parents for their efforts in support of the new building and the school as a whole. Continue reading
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Mint Hill Park on Fairview could receive new name

By Michele Dotson; Staff Writer  dotson.michele@minthilltimes.com

Screen Shot 2013-10-03 at 2.53.20 PM At the September 26 Board of Commissioners meeting, a recommendation was made to rename the Mint Hill Park on Fairview.
Mayor Ted Biggers said that it has been recommended that the park be renamed in order to pay tribute to area veterans.
“It could be something like Mint Hill Veteran’s Park,” he said. “We don’t have to vote on an actual name tonight. We should involve the Parks and Recreation Committee and see if they could come up with a list of possible names.”
Commissioner Mickey Ellington agreed, saying there should be time to put some thought into it.
“The veterans deserve everything we can do for them,” he says.
Commissioner Brenda McRae said it was most appropriate to honor our veterans in this way, and it was unanimously approved to move forward with the idea.
In addition to the North Carolina Korean War Veterans Memorial that is located at the park, plans for the Armed Forces Museum and Archives of the Carolinas are still moving forward.
“Discretionary income is not as available as it was four or five years ago,” says Bill Dixon, president of the museum, “but we are still working very hard to make it happen.”
Dixons says that organizers are meeting next week to revamp the campaign. The last fund raising event was in January, 2013 when the United States Air Force Rhythm in Blue Jazz Ensemble concert drew a crowd of over 400.
Town Manager Brian Welch said if a decision could be reached at the next Board of Commissioners Meeting, there would probably be enough time to order and have a new park sign installed by the date of the Korean War Memorial dedication on November 9. Continue reading
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Supt. Morrison listens to community

Charlotte-Mecklenburg School’s new superintendent, Dr. Heath Morrison, led a community town hall meeting at Rocky River High School last Thursday to hear from parents, students, and teachers.  It was the first of many community meetings scheduled for the new school year.
Rocky River principal, Brandy Nelson, introduced Morrison to the event.  “On behalf of the students, the community, the faculty, the staff, we’d like to welcome Dr. Morrison to Rocky River.  It’s a special place; we love it very much.  We are thrilled that you’re here today.  Thank you for coming.”  Nelson presented Morrison with orange and brown Rocky River “swag,” including a hat and jacket. Continue reading

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