Education

CMS board to pick leaders and vote on Montessori high school

New CMS board member Elyse Dashew, shown at her son’s middle school, will be sworn in with incumbents Ericka Ellis-Stewart and Mary McCray on Tuesday.
New CMS board member Elyse Dashew, shown at her son’s middle school, will be sworn in with incumbents Ericka Ellis-Stewart and Mary McCray on Tuesday. dhinshaw@charlotteobserver.com

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board will lay the groundwork for a new year and parents who want a Montessori high school could get their wish at Tuesday’s board meeting.

The board will salute departing member Tim Morgan, swear in new member Elyse Dashew and elect a chair and vice chair. Morgan, who didn’t seek re-election, is the current vice chairman.

The board will also vote on a last-minute proposal to let eighth-graders at Sedgefield Middle School’s Montessori program stay on as ninth-graders next year. Parents pushed hard for a Montessori high school, which will be a first for CMS, but Superintendent Ann Clark hesitated because there’s no long-term home for the school.

The proposal to add ninth grade at Sedgefield for 2016-17 says nothing about years after that. The future of the program will likely fall to another superintendent, as Clark’s contract expires next summer. But it gives the Montessori faculty and families a chance to build on the momentum of a program they say is growing and will be strengthened by a high school option.

Also coming up this week is a policy committee meeting to continue the board’s review of student assignment. Here’s what to expect.

Tuesday board meeting

When and where: 6 p.m., main chamber of the Government Center, 600 E. Fourth St.

Public input: The board will take three-minute comments on any topic. Sign up by calling 980-343-5139 by noon Tuesday or on site before the meeting starts.

Watch from home: The meeting is streamed on the internet and televised live at CMS-TV Cable 3. Read the agenda, get the video link and find contact information for board members at www.cms.k12.nc.us/boe

Thursday assignment panel

When and where: The board’s Policy Committee meets at 10:30 a.m. Thursday in Room 528 of the Government Center.

Public engagement: The meeting is open to the public but no comments are taken.

What to expect: The committee is working on guiding principles, expected to be approved in March, that will chart the course for specific changes that could take effect in 2017-18. Members and staff are also working on an opinion survey, targeted for January.

Watch from home: Committee meetings aren’t broadcast live but video is posted at the link from the board page, usually by the next day.

Ann Doss Helms: 704-358-5033, @anndosshelms

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