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Commissioners address plea to school board
to suspend process of school closings for '11-'12


Oct. 26, 2010

The video clips that follow are from this morning's Forum, where Mecklenburg County Commissioners revealed that there was a meeting Monday morning involving school, county and community leaders at Berry Academy of Technology to discuss the process being used by Charlotte-Mecklenburg School to identify school closings that would help save money next year. The board expects a large cut in its revenues from state and federal levels. School board chair Eric Davis has said he wanted to look at cutting buildings and other non-personnel expenses so that fewer teacher jobs would be cut next spring.

At that Monday meeting, according to commissioners and others who discussed the matter at the Forum Tuesday, school officials were advised to halt the process because proposals have been made too quickly for the public to absorb, and because the process has not allowed for sufficient public input.

About six hours after that meeting, however, and about two hours before a public meeting to discuss some of the closings, CMS announced it would recommend closing Harding University High School, a school that had not been discussed earlier for closing, leaving Waddell High School open. A noisy and emotional but peacable meeting ensued last night at South Mecklenburg High. Some of the comments below refer to that meeting Monday night.

Save Our Schools, a grass-roots group that initially formed to save Westerly Hills Elementary, has collaborated with the NAACP and other groups recently to call into question the larger CMS closings process.

Levester Flowers, a Forum regular and president of SOS, asked the candidates present whether they would, on Wednesday, Oct. 27, attend a 10 a.m. press conference and signal their support for SOS's request that the school board halt its closing process. Here are responses that were taped Tuesday:


Forum convener Sarah Stevenson addressed the issue wirth words that made clear that she was at Monday's meeting:





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