Meetings, rallies precede CMS and NC budget talks

A series of public meetings and teacher rallies are coming up as the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board prepares to vote on a budget and the N.C. legislature gears up for its 2014 session.

The board votes Tuesday on Superintendent Heath Morrison’s $1.3 billion budget plan for 2014-15. His request for almost $403 million in county money includes $27 million for 3 percent across-the-board raises for all CMS employees. It also includes $1.9 million to help open new schools and programs in August.

The General Assembly convenes May 14, with teacher compensation and other education issues expected to be high on the agenda.

Here are some of the upcoming events:

• Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools officials will hold the last of five community budget presentations from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday at South Mecklenburg High, 8900 Park Road.

• The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Association of Educators will hold a rally for teachers and public education from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday at Marshall Park, 800 E. Third St. The rally, also supported by teacher groups from surrounding counties, is touted as a chance to “send a message to legislators ... that we are not pleased with what is being done to public education.”

• Morrison will hold a “coffee with the superintendent” session 7:30-9 a.m. Tuesday at First Ward Elementary, 715 N. Caldwell St. People are invited to discuss any topic.

• The school board meets at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Government Center, 600 E. Fourth St. The meeting will include time for public comments.

• On May 14, as the General Assembly convenes, the N.C. Association of Educators will hold a “day of action for public schools” in Raleigh as part of the group’s campaign to urge lawmakers to reverse some of the cuts made last year. Call 800-662-7924 for details.