Eleven more Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools principals have earned new freedom to run their schools, based on good job evaluations and strong results with students.
They join about 50 tapped by Superintendent Peter Gorman last spring to pilot his new “freedom and flexibility” plan, part of a shift away from the districtwide mandates that put CMS in the national spotlight a few years ago. Gorman and the school board are now trying to give more latitude to successful educators while keeping tight reins on the rest.
This year, CMS set a higher bar for end-of-year test gains that qualify principals for the list.
Two of the 11 added, Cathy Hammond of Thomasboro Elementary and Tonya Kales of Ashley Park Elementary, were recently transferred to those spots in an effort to turn around low-performing, high-poverty schools. Their gains came at previous assignments.
Another, Jametta Martin-Tanner, is leaving the alternative Hawthorne High to open a new middle school in the Ridge Road area of northeast Mecklenburg.
Also added is Barry Blair, who opened Garinger's New Technology High in 2006. Two large high schools, Garinger and Olympic, split into smaller schools with career or academic themes that year in hopes of boosting test scores and other measures of achievement. Most of the small schools have logged weak performance so far, but New Technology has some of the district's best pass rates for low-income and minority students.
The “freedom and flexibility” designation does not involve extra pay for principals or money for their schools.
Others added this spring are:
Leah Davis, Montclaire Elementary.
Brian Doerer, Pineville Elementary.
Steve Drye, Elon Park Elementary.
Leslie McCarley, Chantilly Elementary.
Ynez Olshausen, Smith Language Academy (K-8).
Paul Pratt, Berryhill Elementary.
Duane Wilson, Shamrock Gardens Elementary.