Friday, October 31, 2014

How can CMS get parents more involved in schools?

Karen Mapp
When Arlene Ackerman would be hired as a superintendent in a new district, she would often dress up in jeans and sneakers and walk into a school, say she was new to the neighborhood, and ask how she could learn about enrolling her child.

The response Ackerman got would tell her a lot about why parents might not be getting involved in their child's school.

"One school said, 'Who are you and what do you want? You can't just walk up here like that. You have to make an appointment,'" related Karen Mapp, a senior lecturer at the Harvard Graduate School of Education who studies family engagement, this week.

I heard from Mapp when I got the chance to sit in on a professional development workshop this week for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools staff who work to increase family involvement in the school.

Many were counselors, others had specific family engagement titles, and there were a few assistant principals or others mixed in. Senior leaders had gone through a similar training earlier in the day.

One of Mapp's main points: Increasing involvement in schooling starts with training for everyone in the school, not just counselors.

"If you don't have a system for greeting families, you are behind," Mapp said. "You are leaving it to chance."

The seminar was an enlightening look at some of the challenges CMS faces in getting families involved in the school community.

Staff members offered a variety of issues: Parents without transportation to the school, language barriers, and parents who had a bad school experience of their own growing up.

Mapp encouraged the group to attack the problem from both sides, rather than just counting on parents to change behavior. Teachers and staff, for example, could be trained in ways to make the school more inviting for parents, and gear communication more toward learning.

She suggested things like home visits, or an open house that focuses on two things each child should be able to do by the end of the semester, rather than one that harps on attendance policy and dress code.

Mapp also asked the group to expand their view of engagement. "Parental involvement" typically means mom or dad showing up to a school event; "family engagement" could mean an uncle or close neighbor advocating for school work, or a parent showing a child a rough life of manual labor because he doesn't have an education.

Mapp showed research from the University of Chicago that showed that increased parent engagement is a crucial element to lasting academic improvement.

"It has to be intentional," Mapp said. "Your schools cannot improve without it. Full stop."


Anonymous said...

Hand out $50 bills. All the free loaders will come out.

Anonymous said...

Mapp is another educrat from the corporate-backed Harvard school of education. She says schools can do better, but how does she know? She's never taught in an urban setting and is insulated from the realities faced by families and teachers.

Anonymous said...

Pass a law to end mandatory education age requirements. Rather than 16 make it ZERO.

Why should anybody be forced to attend school to act as a babysitting service and create disruptions? This would help bring all the GOOD home, private, religious, parochial, schoolers, etc students back into the system.

When screwball socialist Obama takes executive action to legalize what will be 100 million reds from south of the border though it will be the end of public schools as you know them.
This is why it is imperative to take immediate action to end all age requirements for public school enrollment in advance.

With a 20 trillion debt and rising and taxes at alltime high and Obamacare killing families and workers there is no way America will survive with the current set up.

America will be forced into financial ruin and chaos since after 2 trillion the Fed has decided to stop sinking 80 billion a month since 2008 into the stock market to keep the economy afloat.

Child labor laws must be reversed as an influx of up to 50 million illegal children flood America.

America must get back the 1000s of factories that fled to Asia to accommodate these illegals who will all legalized by Marxist Obama executive action.

Action must be taken immediately. If you think public schools are bad now you aint seen nuttin yet. Its coming and conservatives in Congress cannot prevent it even if they take the Senate.

Obama converting America into a 3rd world socialist nation by tyrannical executive force and public schools all over America will be devastated if they stay status quo.

For purposes of survival Republicans are secretly contemplating a split into 2 separate nations with equal assets should Obama do what is anticipated as otherwise all will be lost. There is the terrorist threat also to deal with from muslims that is growing stronger and no ground troops to send since normal males refuse to fight for Obama after the homosexual marriage by his Fed judges and by in the military.
Homosexuals have quietly been replacing all ranking officers leaving a completely demoralized military.
Real problems.

Anonymous said...

It should read "How can CMS get parents more involved at home?"

If the parent is incapable of providing a proper home life for a child, how can we expect them to get more involved at school?

And so the problem continues. Until many of these people (all colors, all races - just sayin) get off the govt handout, the overall problem will continue.

Anonymous said...

The only times parents would show for PTA meetings at one school was when 1)their kids were performing 2)free food was served 3) or both. And even then, they usually weren't actively listening or participating in the rest of the meeting.

When it comes to being active in a child's education, "you can lead a horse to water, but....". It will be a huge cultural shift for many 'parents'. They will need to get off their back ends and actually parent!

Larry said...

Heath Morrison has asked me to be on a small group that will meet to discuss this very subject, note this is very important to CMS now.

You will be seeing more openness and less of a we are a prison attitude at CMS.

I am glad that I am a part of this new open school that works as a learning environment and not an armed camp.

Charter Schools do not have police at them and why should our schools. Those who are not there to learn need to go to armed camps to be babysat.

Anonymous said...

Yes, the only time i would show up to PTA meetings were the times when my kid was performing. Why? Because they always had the stupid meetings while I was still at work or at a time where I would have no way to make it at the 4:30 meeting times. EVERY TIME the PTA meetings were at 4:30. Working parents can not make it to school at that time. Especially in CMS where the kids are bussed all over the city. If you want parent involvement, TRY to schedule meetings that put the schedule of working parents in mind.

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

Let me perfectly honest with you. I have been working in CMS for 25 years now. We have websites, we send home progress reports, we hold parent conferences, we have tam meetings, we have phone call banks, we have CMS television, we have cable messages, we send home emails and we personally call parents. Now, what has changed? Nothing! Parents still act completely stunned when their child comes home with an "F" or "D" our principals and superintendent still blame teachers when this happens and we have dropped graduation standards to a point where a kid no longer has to study, work or do assignments to pass and graduate. Will anyone, and I mean anyone hold the Board of Education and this Superintendent accountable for their actions?

Anonymous said...

Larry, the charters in New Orleans have multiple police on the grounds at all times.....

Anonymous said...

My school and PTA just want the parents to write checks so the principal has his slush fund money to buy furniture.

Anonymous said...

Many of the parents should be arrested in the high school by the SRO because the parents are ILLEGAL.

They are depleting the taxpayers money, reducing the number of underpaid teachers which increases the classroom size of legal taxpaying citizens and continually use resources such as the school nurse that they do not pay for.

When will CMS abide by the LAW and stop social experimentation?

Yamo said...

How about a city or county law that REQUIRES parent participation? As a teacher, I feel there is enough out there we do to inform parents about anything and everything. When it comes to behavior and literacy, it is up to the parent to be the first teacher and if that fails, then YOU become more accountable to our processes. It is disheartening and makes me angry when I hear parents say "I don't care anymore" or "what am I supposed to do?" Instead of MORE talk of teacher accountability, when will we start shifting accountability back where it really needs to be - upon the parent and student?

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

To anon @ October 31, 2014 at 8:54 AM: The school I was referring to had PTA meetings at 6pm or 7pm. Same result. Many parents only attended if there was something in it directly for them.

Unknown said...


At Tuesday’s BOE meeting parents of a child with a serious and confining medical condition I can’t pronounce pleaded with the Board to approve a boundary change. Not a startling request. Pretty common except that every justification they listed had to do with how different their child was from other but yet how welcoming and supportive the Bain ES students were.

If the boundary isn’t changed to include their side of the street, the child will have to start all over at a new school.

That the parents had to go to a public hearing for a compassionate boundary change was a failure of Cultural Competency at CMS. For those that don’t know, Cultural Competency is creating an environment of mutual understanding and trust that results in positive accomplishments.

Let these parents not have to wait a month, then sit at another Board meeting to hold their breaths while the verdict is publically announce.

Make the decision now.

Bolyn McClung

Anonymous said...

So much of what I'm reading and witnessing in society is the ME effect. Parents (and people in general) are so focused on what they are getting - or not getting - that it has become everyone vs. everyone. Instead, why aren't we asking what we can give? How can we help? If a change is for the greater good, and not necessarily my personal choice, then I need to support it.

I have a child with special needs in a CMS school. I think there is a lot to be desired in the EC department of CMS. However, I support my child's teachers, I stay involved, and I support his school in various ways. I do what I can to make it a partnership. CMS - and the world - is not all about you. You get what you give.

Anonymous said...

I especially like the mention of home visits. Seriously??? Exactly WHEN does she propose that we make these home visits? I can't speak for other teachers, but after spending the day teaching and my "planning" periods attending meetings, I come in early and stay late just to get things accomplished. Despite that, I still have to take work home to grade and enter in Power Teacher. Unless she has a way to slow down Earth's rotation thus adding more hours to each day, this is nothing more than a bunch of hot air from a career "educrat" who would utterly fail at being a teacher nowadays.

Earth to Genius: a lot of teachers have students who live in neighborhoods so dangerous that police won't even enter without back up. YOU do home visits on top of everything else that is on your plate and get back to me.

Anonymous said...

It helps when the teacher asks for specific class room help. Parents need to know what is needed if they are not stepping up and volunteering on their own. It never hurts to ask for help.

Anonymous said...

Expand Project LIFT to all schools so the potential benefit could help all schools? Offer the State Voucher to all households who pay taxes? Pay the teachers maybe a few of them would stay ?
Thats just a few top of the house items that might help get people involved. And top of house would be for CMS to stop fudging their numbers and reports . A little honesty would go so far .

Anonymous said...

My child attends ELON Park and they could not be more rude and unfriendly. This school does not want parental involvement unless it in the form of money. Parents cannot walk kids to class. We had to fight to get to eat lunch with our kids and then only 1 guest no siblings. Which schools want parental involvement at school?

Anonymous said...

Why do they have equipment that cost thousands of dollars that doesn't work? The projector board in my child's classroom hasn't worked for three weeks because no one will change the light bulb. What's up with that?

Anonymous said...

Home School
Private School

The only 2 options that should be in this country. That is the only way to get TRUE parent involvement. Everything else that CMS does is just a social experiment funded by the taxpayers.

Anonymous said...

Parents, just keep writing the checks to the PTA. That's how most school administrators want your help.

Anonymous said...

My son's first grade teacher doesn't want the help. She's been teaching forever and feels that parents in the class room are a distraction.

Anonymous said...

free pizza - it works every time!

Anonymous said...

Every High School principal makes $100,000+ in CMS

Each wants parents to give their schools checks and money hand over fist. This is the funny money fund that MOrrison gives them. Just like the graduation numbers these funds go to whatever whim that is out there.

Anonymous said...

How did those free Zumba classes work out?

I know that was just for one of the "special" schools, but...

Shamash said...

I don't think extrinsic rewards do much for parental involvement.

If the parents aren't motivated by the fact that they are raising their own children (maybe they aren't?), then I don't see what else could motivate them.

Home visits by teachers seem like a fairly ridiculous idea.

It is possibly dangerous for some.

I wouldn't want a teacher to visit my home as a part of their job.

They have enough to do without becoming social service caseworkers.

Maybe parents who regularly work with DSS or who are on parole are used to this sort of thing, but we're not.

It's much more trouble than us going to a meeting at the school.

And it probably annoys the teacher, too.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps I am mistaken, but when reading this article, I did not see where the teacher is the one who would be making the in home visits. However if indeed that is what is being suggested, I would agree with you in that is a ridiculous suggestion. The school counselors would be the ones better suited to make in home visits.

another issue that I find troubling is the lack of accountability and punishment. This country as a whole, is heading in the wrong direction and we only have ourselves to thank for it, family values are becoming a rarity when they should be the norm.

Anonymous said...

PTa money at schools being used to buy TVs for school hallways and cafeterias, no joke. Gotta keep the students pacified and entertained at all times apparently.

Anonymous said...

How can CMS get parents more involved in schools?

Hmmm... Suggestions range from handing out $50 bills to giving away other "free stuff"....

What does this say about CMS, and what does this say about the community's view of CMS, when CMS appears unable to engage the public in a constructive way?

My take is simple.

CMS has become too big! CMS has become too insular!

As a result, CMS has lost touch with the community at large whom they serve. Otherwise, we wouldn't be asked:

How can CMS get parents more involved in schools?

What is your take?

Anonymous said...

Morrison out!! A few more leaving from the district offices and maybe, just maybe things will start to turn around for the local community.

Personalized Learning was one of Morrison's initiatives.

Can we go back to traditional teaching techniques now...Please!

Anonymous said...

Andrew, you better start a new blog quick as the comments are about to roll.

You can head it "Why did Superintendent Morrison resign?" and no need to write an actual blog. Just let people comment.

Anonymous said...

privatize the cms school system and you will not only get parents more involved, you will also get private business involved with both their staff time and MONEY!!!! Get the government OUT OF OUR SCHOOLS!!!!

Anonymous said...

privatize the schools

Anonymous said...

next cms government school superintendent needs at least one million $........come on taxpayers, you cheap-skates!!! Quick, make that sales tax raise 1/2 cent instead of a puny 1/4 cent!!!!

Wiley Coyote said...

Now that Heath is toast, more parents will probably get involved.

I predicted he wouldn't last 5 years.

Jackie said...

People didn't trust Heath, you can't be all things to all people.

Anonymous said...

CMS needs to be either broken apart as it is way to big or broken into consortiums. Each consortiums have a completely different focus and it is a privilege to be in one or the other. Have a north, south, east and west. All areas have the same different levels and some have schools where it is strict testing to get in, some have no sports, some are purely technically working hand in hand with local tech colleges. That way you can have 4 superintendents .

CMS is the most confusing school system I have ever seen in terms of where I may or can choose to send my children. We literally have 15 different options and not one looks promising and/or I don't want my 5 year old being bused across town.

This trying to mix white/black/Asian/Hispanic/gifted/not gifted/middle class/not middle class/wealthy/autistic/not autistic/behavior problems/perfect child is causing parental gridlock and so the easiest thing to do is pick a private school or charter.

CMS and Project lift needs to stop thinking everyone is fit to send to college and start thinking there is a perfect fit for everyone and teach it to them.

Anonymous said...

It has been comical to see CMS try to reinvent the wheel over and over the past few years, all in the name of 21st Century Learning. Teaching is not a complicated endeavor, and most information taught at our schools has not changed that much over the years. Just do the job of teaching well, do not over complicate it and the learning will happen. Stop changing everything, every year.

Anonymous said...

It has been comical to see CMS try to reinvent the wheel over and over the past few years, all in the name of 21st Century Learning. Teaching is not a complicated endeavor, and most information taught at our schools has not changed that much over the years. Just do the job of teaching well, do not over complicate it and the learning will happen. Stop changing everything, every year. It's exhausting and a waste of time for staff and students.

Wiley Coyote said...

...but Heath will get another high paying job touting his HUGE graduation accomplishment and people elsewhere will believe the BS. He came here touting the same garbage and there were people then warning us from Nevada.

I wonder if dumbing down kids and using fuzzy math will ever be brought up.

Anonymous said...

Most were suspicious of the increased graduation rates, faculty included.

Maybe Heath mentioned he wanted to split CMS up and the BOE got nervous.

Chamberlain said...

the love affair is over so soon?

Anonymous said...

Too bad Heath can't take the CMS BOE that along with him when he leaves.

Ultimately, the BOE selected him....

Can we send them packing too?

Anonymous said...

When all else is failing, fire someone!!

Anonymous said...

Health tried, he did, but I wonder if he realized early on big change might be needed but it might not be welcomed. Recruiting principals from non-CMS counties will help "broaden" CMS for years to come and was an insightful strategy.

Anonymous said...


MOrrison is not the only one who should resign. Great investigative journalism going on in Charlotte. How many times were you let on to the graduation and attendance numbers being washed over by the principals?

Go find another beat !

Anonymous said...

He didn't understand what he was walking into. NC is crazy.. CMS is too large to manage. No matter what you do someone will be upset. It's a no win situation. In NV he was not seen as a pro-teach superintendent. He was actually seen as a modern reformer with anti-teacher tendencies. The turnover rate and lack of stability is so crazy here. Here he looks pro-teacher for just trying to create some stability. The bureaucrats in the department of ed in Raleigh are wacky. The lack of local control is strange and NC is a hot mess. He is smart and charismatic. He will land on his feet.

Anonymous said...

This school district will never succeed if there is one admin staff member for every one teacher. Think about it.

Anonymous said...


All those who drink the BROAD kool aide resign. You never should have eaten the cookie as well.

Shamash said...

Anon 10:43.

True, the article doesn't make it clear WHO visits.

And the Chicago study doesn't mention it (that I saw).

So maybe the home visits are just a "freebie" thrown in by the local educrats.

Actually, a teacher would be MORE welcome in our home than some school counselor.

The last thing these schools need is one more reason to hire another bureaucrat to do things marginally related to actually teaching the kids.

And, unless your child is proven to be abused or neglected in some way, I can do without the unsolicited "advice" from an educrat (as I'm sure most responsible parents would agree).

Besides, that Chicago study mentioned that neglected and abused children are one of the problems, so I say send the educrat/social workers to see them FIRST.

Of course, I'm one of those people who thinks that the average DSS caseworker isn't really THAT DIFFERENT from the people they "supervise", so don't really want them in my house (or casing my joint, as they say)

(Just based on what I read in the papers about DSS employees and their problems, you know.)

I'm in agreement with the few people who say that CMS has just grown too big.

I think it's past time to divide CMS into at least 4 independent districts, so it can be managed better. And it would help with the accountability, too.

And there are PLENTY of studies that show the optimum size for a school district.

And they are all MUCH SMALLER than CMS.

Shamash said...

"This school district will never succeed if there is one admin staff member for every one teacher. Think about it"

I have and I agree.

It's ridiculous. And it hasn't always been that way, either.

But some folks just seem to want to add even more layers of bureaucracy and claim that they are helping "education".

And I just don't see it happening that way.

This is why so many (or maybe so few?) want to cut the money.

The conservative phrase "starve the beast" comes to mind.

Because nothing else seems to work.

Some people are opposed to having their tax money go to things which do not "benefit" them.

I look at this differently and primarily object to having tax money spent on things which actually HARM us.

Such is the state of public education today that I think it now falls into that category.

We seem to be preparing some kids for lives of failure (and/or crime) as much as anything else.

I think it has something to do with confusing "social service" delivery with education.

We need to separate the two again.

Anonymous said...

school systems need to understand, that for a community to buy into the leadership, that same leadership needs to buy into the community. Morrison has a track record of staying in a position for an average of two years. When you look across the CMS system, you see many principals coming and going.

Schools like West Charlotte need committed leadership and not just credentials!

Shamash said...

Anon 10:43pm

I did a little more research on Karen Mapp and she, in fact, DOES support teachers visiting the home.

She is one of the developers of the Parent Teacher Home Visit Project.

So, maybe we were just reading between the lines and drawing conclusions based on the rest of the story such as:

"One of Mapp's main points: Increasing involvement in schooling starts with training for everyone in the school, not just counselors."

Anyway, FWIW.

Of course, the real problem is implementing all this wonderful stuff in your copious spare time if you're a teacher.

Anonymous said...

It the same ole same old song and dance my friends.

New boss same as the old boss.

Move the chairs around again on the deck of the sinking ship and call it a new name. Same BROAD playbook. Cant wait for the new inspirational slogan to be released by CMS. Will the last administrator with any common sense please turn out the lights when you leave also.

Anonymous said...

Is one man worth 10 teachers?

How many assistant superintendents does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

Anonymous said...

Heath Morrison wants to quit and spend more time with his family making 288,000 a year as ex-CMS superintendent who was only on the job less than 2 yrs? WTF?

Dont his family eat? Will he be applying for welfare and food stamps?
Something does not add up.

CMS will def drive any top chief crazy (i.e. Gorman) but only 2 yrs on the job and no other job elsewhere?

Does this have anything to do with the insider report intent of the school board to hire its 1st ever black superintendent as is rumored since everything in CMS and the city in general is 99.9% race oriented ?

What will that do to attendance problems and white flight? Dont answer.

Anonymous said...

some good points here, another reason to validate my voting NO on the bonds: A school system with as many support staff as teachers in the class room.

Anonymous said...

What about the report that Heath has applied to replace LA superintendent of schools who recently resigned?

Anonymous said...

11:10 PM

I believe Dr. Pughsley (Vilma's "Buffalo Soldier") was black.

On this week's episode of "Name that Superintendent"!

Murphy, Smith, Pughsley, Some Dude, Gorman, Clark?, Morrison... Who'd I miss?


Anonymous said...

you never quit a job before you got the new one in the bag ...

who is stupid enuff to quit a 300k job before they are confirmed in writing on a new one of equal or more pay ?

Anonymous said...

don't think he quit, sounds like there was a bit more involved here and he was told to leave, or he would be fired.

Did hear that Reno, NV is looking for a new Sup too, he didn't last long either.

Anonymous said...

Does this mean the personalized learning experiment will be ended? It is time for Hawk Ridge to go back to providing an education to the children that go there. Bet we have to buy new furniture again though. Here a thought instead of asking the parents to keep paying for capital items like furniture why not pay for these items out of the capital bond fund.

Wiley Coyote said...

Morrison resigned after investigation into misconduct allegations

An investigation into Superintendent Heath Morrison raised questions about a "culture of fear" among district staff and cost overruns at new schools.

Imagine that.

Reopening schools already closed... making STEM schools out of elementary schools and adding grades 6 through 8 on top of that with NO room to put kids, then putting a STEM school at a middle school 8 tenths of a mile away with twice as much land?

Mosrrison should be made to repay the funds he's wasted.

The sad fact is, our illustrious BOE will hire another status quo educrat with a "money is no object" mentality.

Shame on the BOE for waiting hours before the polls close to make these revelations known.

If the sales tax passes, you will get what you voted for - more government waste.

Anonymous said...

Wasted is the 16 years spent teaching in this state. So much waste and corruption on everything EXCEPT my salary and benefits package.

Anonymous said...

In the meantime, Mo Green is still at the helm in his NC school superintendent position - 3 CMS school superintendents later.

I aways liked Mo - who was super smart but lacked natural limelight abilities. Mo's style was more servant leadership.

No more Hollywood? I never understood why CMS didn't choose Anne Clark in the first place.


Shamash said...


According to my sources (Wikipedia), your "Some Dude" (Looks Like A Lady).

Dr. Frances Haithcock (2005–2006)

Anonymous said...

How can CMS get superintendents more committed in schools?

Thank God my father was a small town and rural superintendent - not an urban one. My dad wouldn't have lasted a year in CMS - and he's the first to admit it.


Anonymous said...

Yes, Francis! I remember Francis.

Although, there was someone else who was an interim superintendent - the guy between the Gormanator (I made that up myself) and Heath.

As far as "diversity", we've had men, women, white and black and the helm. Why not a lesbian? Too bad she isn't Hmong or Hispanic.


Anonymous said...

Mo Green

And there isnt even a statue named for him in this town.

Go Drive A Truck

Anonymous said...

Guess they changed their stance on bullying?

Shamash said...


That's the whole problem many of us have pointed out.

CMS is just too big to be managed properly.

This is a problem with a lot of businesses, too.

Especially in the past when the trend was to "conglomerate".

It's hard to focus when you have too many irons in the fire and too many layers of management between the boss and the product.

It would be like Walmart merging with McDonalds and Apple to form McWalApple.

Who could possibly understand all of that?

Anonymous said...


Way to resign amoung controversey right before the vote.

Anonymous said...

I noticed something in the election results... Overwhelming support for more than 100 million for low income housing, Millions for civic construction bonds but no more money for education...
So democracy in action free stuff for people on government assistance but no more money for the people who will teach their children, or Arts and Science Council, or CPCC where many of those low income people will need to go for job training. I voted against the incombent county commissioners who will now wash their hands on teacher funding and say the people have spoken...
Makes me disheartened.

Anonymous said...

Why is the superintendent suddenly being forced out by this school board ? Does he know too much about something?

Wasn't Morrison like his predecessor getting tougher with the good ole boy girl incompetency of of the board and administrator plus trying to stop good students from leaving before it gets worse if that is possible? Does the board and its minions want this continued exit to be replaced by illegals or others possibly and want a new superintendent with less stringency?

What about this timing a day before the election ?

After only 2 yrs on the job suddenly Morrison bullies in private meetings? Or maybe just telling the truth but some refuse to listen?

So Morrison suddenly wants to quit to spend more time with his family with no job?

What about reports he was against the sale tax or alleged inappropriate misconduct or a UNCC project that had cost overruns?

Whats with all these many excuses to trash a highly experienced PhD superintendent quitting a 300k job on a dime after only 2 yrs ?

They are all over the map.

Is Morrison railroaded out by those who want the status quo system in place with the same incompetents?

Did Morrison know something and getting his character assassinated?
Something being covered up? Atlanta deja vu? Somebody being paid off to keep quiet?

Something def rotten in Denmark with conspiracy and coup written all over this sudden resignation.

Anonymous said...

Teachers don't need a superintendent. They will continue to do their job, and don't need or want all this nonsense, including all the piles of admin work they are now supposed to do. Forget that, just teach the kids.

As far as the NO vote, I think people are suspicious of a school system who has as many support staff as teachers. Teachers should fight this.

Anonymous said...

Regardless of the true reason Dr. Morrison resigned, I know what it's like to grow up in a public fishbowl.

I'm grateful I didn't have to grow up in a shark tank like the spouses and children of CMS superintendents.


Wiley Coyote said...

Thanks to all those who voted NO on the sales tax.

Watching all the national channels show the county map for NC and there's the lone blue, Democrat, liberal beacon of Mecklenburg County.

...and the slide of Mecklenburg continues.

Anonymous said...

to your point, even though Tillis had the lead late, I still believed Char Meck was going to get Hagan over the finish line.

I think the voters spoke very clearly on the sales tax issue and good for them. CMS needs to get rid of the waste and pay the deserving teachers with the savings. Another suggestion would be to reduce the salaries of the people at the top, Morrison's salary for example, $288K, really?

Cramerton said...

11:14 don't be disheartened. The public does not trust CMS and those working in the ivory tower. The money is there, just gotta get rid of a few of them at the top. How about not fill the Sup position for awhile....things will move on just fine without him and the students will do fine.

Anonymous said...

This entire situation is WAY BIGGER than Helms and Dunn are able to dig up and uncover.

The CO needs to put some top people on this to find the TRUTH. This untold story could blow the Mayor Cannon story out of the water.

Show some grit and go to work for a change. Stop drinking all the kool=aide.

Anonymous said...

As a teacher the issue of Morrison being abusive to district staff is both laughable and insulting.

So members of the district staff who have zero impact on our student's education are upset because they were mistreated and this causes an investigation. Where are all of the investigations at the school level of teachers being "belittled" by their Principals? Where are the investigations into teachers being abused by students?

What I have learned from this is that abusive behavior only takes place when you have upset the most useless people in an organization.

Anonymous said...

Re: Hawk Ridge and personalized learning-interesting they are holding task force meetings suddenly for the parents. I would say a majority of HR parents are extremely upset and disappointed by the lack of learning this year. It is truly a joke and the blame is on the school leadership.

Anonymous said...

I think the ivory tower forced him out. They have been bullying teachers for years. Long before Morrison came. What a joke!! Sometimes in life your boss isn't nice... That's life!!! I believe Morrison wanted them to get off their chairs and go support teachers. That's why he's gone. I am a teacher and I voted no! Money is not the problem..

Anonymous said...

He couldnt be any worse at bullying than many of the principals in CMS. Ivory Tower is a go along to get along system. Real change, instead of name changes, is the dirtiest word over there.

Some people were asked to do some REAL work such as get into the schools and not just shuffle some papers around. The real injustice is most of the personnel that makes up the Human Resources and Public Relations departments. It may take months before a file is removed from the top of their desks.

Ivory Tower has so many layers of ineptness and fraud it apparently is not seen to the naked eye. Ehh Dunn ?

Shamash said...

"Another suggestion would be to reduce the salaries of the people at the top, Morrison's salary for example, $288K, really?"

They justify BIG salaries by being a BIG district.

It has nothing to do with the quality of their final product.

Again, breaking CMS into smaller pieces just makes more and more sense.

Anonymous said...

Well, perhaps Mo Green doesn't warrant a statue in his honor in Charlotte but it's possible Guildford County might be more than willing to name a school after him - especially after witnessing Charlotte's revolving door superintendent foibles.

Mo Middle School.


Anonymous said...

Apparently, the CO has uncensored one of my comments. I let ya'll guess which one it was.


Anonymous said...

Re: Guy Chamberlain

I had no idea Guy suddenly "retired" Sept. 1st.

I don't know how long Guy was with CMS, but it was much longer than many CMS superintendents combined. At one point, CMS assigned Guy to head the Student Assignment department at a time when all hell broke loose over the Audrey Kell H.S. boundary line right after a major bond referendum went down in flames.

Guy is a U.S. Navel Academy graduate with a very long and unblemished history with CMS.


Anonymous said...

My 5th grade public charter school classes are navigating Shakespeare.

And the plot thickens...


Anonymous said...

What a crazy place North Carolina is. I moved here because I thought it was a good place to bring up a family.. It's like the wild west down here.

Anonymous said...

Coup d'estat RED ALERT !!!!

Totally shameful what these local incompetents have done to Morrison (and Gorman) good conservatives as they try to justify their lies and allegations with late excuses of abusive misconduct in private. Abusive misconduct? Sounds a little fishy coming so late doesn't it ? Clearly convoluted BS.

This politically motivated event occurred exactly one day before this important mid term election that failed miserably as the worst mid term for any party in history because of total incompetency and lack of credibility in DC to say the least. Never send a boy to do a mans job.

Why not a single complaint known in Morrison's short 2 yr run until now that reeks of some revolution overthrow conspiracy in the same way as the county commission sneak attack 2 yrs ago. Does the school board know how bad it looks?

Morrison had to display authority to knock some sense into this lackadaisical big spender bloated incompetence and nepotism in a school system that continues to trend downward notwithstanding Obama exec action to legalize what could be 50 million 3rd world illegal aliens that will ignite an avalanche over the borders and flood school systems with 10s of millions of kids to further damage schools and add to the tax burden and debt.
Why the WH intends to do this to poison the well even more is a dark mystery. Impeachment is the only cure.

Thank you Red State Republicans for rescuing America for now but plenty of work to be done and its far from over with the enemy within entrenched for 2 more yrs.

Thanks to highly competent experienced conservative Heath Morrison for his valiant 2 year attempt to get control of a spiraling out of control CMS or exactly what he was hired to do but hijacked in the end by inept incompetents demanding status quo and worse.

Self implosion ... CMS needs to seriously consider complete public school privatization to survive ...

Anonymous said...

Alicia, I would love to be a student in your class!

The NO vote was not a vote against teachers, it was a vote against Big school district politics and administration. The public does not have trust anymore in the higher ups of the institution.

Anonymous said...,%20Realities,%20Prospects.pdf

Anonymous said...

Sounds like we need to get a competent School Board. The current board gets manipulated - Ann Clark and her allies will rule the day.
Clean house - replace all the administrators. Lower salaries in the admin sector so teachers (the young underpaid ones, not the overpaid phys ed) get more.
I was not a Heath fan, but this whole thing reeks. Where was the board - absent monitoring their key hire? Doesn't sound like they gave an improvement opportunity. Same thing will happen again.

Wiley Coyote said...


You can replace every BOE member with another and you will get the same results.

Decisions will still be made by race, income, "diversity" and other archaic status quo driving principles.

Kaye McGarry and Larry Gauvreau are the only two BOE members in the past 10 years who have had the balls to tell it like it is and try to do something about it.

chapel said...

Having moved to CHARLOTTE from across the country and now involved in a legal matter against CMS, I can say that CMS staff is some of the laziest incompetent people I have ever had the misfortune of dealing with, I also believe that taxpayers could save millions in lawsuit payouts in addition to costs involved in sending kids all over town to different schools just to get the right racial mix and shore up test numbers if CMS cleaned house internally maybe its time they give an IQ test to their staff.

Wiley Coyote said...

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg school board voted 6-3 Thursday to accept Superintendent Heath Morrison’s “voluntary resignation.”

Members Tom Tate, Paul Bailey and Eric Davis voted against accepting the resignation. There was no discussion.

Way to go gentlemen. You just proved how pathetic CMS and your governance of it - is.

Anonymous said...

As a CMS teacher I liked and was in favor of HEATH. He needed to shake things up in the Ivory Tower.The other commentators are exactly right. It is full of lazy and incompetent staff. It would take an act of God and Noah to get some of those folks to even get out of their chairs. These people have at best marginal impact on the education of our students in this county.

Now even though I liked Heath, all he was is a $300,000 lobbyist in Raleigh. That is okay for 1 administrator, but we have all these layers of Assistant Superintendents and their assistants and so forth that make an astounding amount of "market adjustment" money. There is way to much bloat and waste in the payroll. How can all these people make $100,000 plus and spend zero time in the classroom ? What is worse is the policies these folks implement the make the actual classroom teacher have to work harder and more hours ?

When will the madness end ?

Anonymous said...

It's time to break CMS up. Have smaller school districts with principals directly accountable to the school boards. No more tower of Babel... No more wasted money on empty suit yes men. It's time for real change. I keep reading about teacher support for Rice. I have never heard one good word about Ann Rice from a teacher. The tower supports/fears her. I don't know her. She may be good but don't exaggerate her support.

Anonymous said...

I got goose bumps waking up this morning as a NC public charter school teacher teaching 5th graders about the Renaissance.

Today's vocabulary word: "Machiavellian"

Freedom, Oh Freedom!


Anonymous said...

4:17 You hit the nail on the head. CMS would be so much more credible and efficient if half of the Ivory Tower was gone, tomorrow. Ironically, no one on the front line, where things really matter, would notice!

Anonymous said...

I seriously doubt your 5th grade students have the slightest clue as to what that word means, never mind the Renaissance, that is unless the think i means carrying around a roasted turkey leg.

Anonymous said...

Parents want the tower gone. Teachers want the tower gone Tax payers want the tower gone. Why do we have the tower?

Ladyluck said...

Kids usually learn about the Renaissance in 7th grade. It's appropriate to learn about it in 7th grade, they have so much more to learn about in the earlier grades. Why rush the curriculum? It doesn't make our kids smarter!

Anonymous said...

I was thinking the same thing Ladyluck. I read Shakespeare in 7th and then took a full semester elective course my senior year focusing on Shakespeare; they characters are so dynamic I wasn't able to relate or appreciate the complexity (which is what Shakespeare is all about) until that year. This is what happens when there is to little control over the curriculum, but Alicia loves to come on here and boast about how wonderful her school is.

Anonymous said...

Alicia likes to boast about her perfect little bubble of acedemia. Reading Alicia's posts have made it abundantly clear that she had to run from public schools because she simply couldn't hack it.

Public schools aren't perfect for the reason that the public isn't perfect. At public schools we educate every child, which is the true challenge of being a teacher.

Anonymous said...

The Big O plays ball with the vultures not wanting to ruffle feathers as usual keeping the "gap" status quo to pass the loot. Nothing new there. Dont rock the boat doing something stupid like investigate. Just play the game and keep it low profile.

Morrison's cost over runs or fabricated verbal abuse excuses are laughable at best and certainly no pay for play involved on his part.

Since when is the board or media ever concerned with cost over runs or abusive verbiage? A few million a drop in the bucket.

Morrison & Gorman were not allowed to tamper with status quo or the gap or improve scores.
Both apparently got careless with their secret oaths that cost them dearly. No secret there.

CMS superintendents are never hired to buck the system and improve student results. The "gap" is the cash cow gold mine like the IRS is to DC.

Same for these Obama Holder shake down cons who never met a big bank or Wall St corp they couldn't pop for at least 20 billion Jesse and Al style.
Deja vu for pro sports and their trillion dollar media tap contract game. Another story.

Bottom line is how much blood can they squeeze out of a turnip. Blood equals money and turnip equals taxpayer or consumer.

Status quo and the "gap" assures the well will never run dry too if they play the card right.

So Pass The Loot ...

Wiley Coyote said...


They don't have to.

As long as voters keep opening their veins willingly and vote for bonds, the money will flow like their blood.

Anonymous said...

I'm no big fan of Heath or CMS for that matter, but aren't you innocent before proven guilty? So if I have a problem with my boss, for whatever reason, I can claim verbal harassment? Geez, maybe he was actually trying to get something constructive accomplished up in the tower. Still smells fishy to me.....

Anonymous said...

There is nothing but red flags and fish with this one !

Comments about the PR and Communications getting a D grade on this one is generous. Tell me again about K. Block and the other buffoon CMS hired from Wake County ?
Tell me about their credentials and how much above $100,000 they are making. Tell me again why all those Ivory Tower workers needed those market adjustment raises when teachers were forsaked years. Another great job CMS, BofE and all those $100,000 + personnel making marginal impact on the students of MECK county.

Anonymous said...

Attention Alicia,
Well bless your heart Alicia! It's always wonderful reading your gloats from the land of milk and honey.
By the way what's the breakdown of FRL students, Mckinney Vento, ED,EC, developmentally disabled in your perfect world? Maybe you could give us a little insight about the operator of this charter? Baker Mitchell leasing you some overpriced real estate? Inquiring minds really are tired of your pedestal grandstanding.

Anonymous said...

With Heath gone, can we bring someone in who is not so obsessed with tests and Common Core?

Shamash said...


You're officially an "elitist" now.

How does it feel to be one of the nails sticking up higher than all the others?

How dare you teach above the accepted norm.

Now get back in line...

Life in Lake Wobegon can be tough for outsiders.


Shamash said...


Here's a tip to make your instruction more "Common Core" compliant.

A sample test question on Machiavelli (so you don't scare the commoners).

(Assuming, of course, that you cannot find a rap song about him...)

1. Choose the name of the musical instrument which BEST rhymes with Niccolo:

A. Saxophone
B. Tuba
C. Flute
D. Piccolo

Just be sure you don't get into too much "depth" and you'll be fine as a teacher.

Keep everything "age appropriate", willya?

Notice that this question not only covers "History", but the "Arts" as well.

There, I hope everyone feels better now.

Anonymous said...

See here I though Alicia taught at a private school because she want to be a teacher and not a glorified babysitter.

Anonymous said...

PR department and K. Block make how much money ?

Thanks for posting my last comments DUNN.

Shamash said...


There's "hope" for your teaching methods.

You CAN relate it to the "urban" crowd...

Why Do Rappers Feel Connected to Machiavelli?

You now have official permission from the "administration" to continue teaching this topic to early elementary school students.

It's now officially part of urban "cultural awareness".

Anonymous said...

bond money, gas tax money, local state federal tax money, property tax money, sales tax money, etc etc etc ... whats the difference?

its all blood money anyway you roll the dice or cut the muster ... you get less they get more in the end ...

thats the way the system works ...
they win you lose ... got it?

like they say the only sure things in life are death and taxes ...

Anonymous said...

But I AM a NC public school teacher earning a NC state teacher salary. My students take the EOG's just like everyone else. I'm required to hold a NC state teaching license and fulfill NCDPI standards.

I really don't have the patience to clarify what a charter school is for people who are jealous that I found a NC public school teaching position well suited for me and aligned with my philosophy of education. I believe CMS is very committed to ensuring families and students have choices within the system. As a public school teacher, I have choices too. I love my job!

And yes, my public charter school social studies curriculum includes the study of Leonardo da Vinci, Shakespeare and Machiavelli. How awesome is this?


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the comforting phone call last night Ann Clark. My questions is if everything is going on just as if nothing happened then why was Morrison, and perhaps you now, worth the salary ?

Ohhhh I forgot


Anonymous said...



Machiavelli meets Philip Glass on the shores of Lake Wobegon?


Anonymous said...

Dunn are you even on this beat anymore?

AD Helms is the one writing all the articles. Will the CO please get someone on the story. This has so many layers of corruption to it that it could make the Cannon situation look like,well, high school.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe bullying is a word used for working adults.. Once again the tower has proven they could not work anywhere besides the tower.. Look at old videos of Bill Gates bashing his staff.. I will not get started with the military. I have seen principals yell at teachers. Is that bullying. What a load of crap. From every thing I have gathered, Heath wanted them to go out and support schools. Stop creating paperwork and do something. Please look into this Dunn

Anonymous said...

9:42 PM

Well, actually, my 5th grade students are thoroughly enjoying learning Renaissance court dances as part of our curriculum which I plan to incorporate into the 5th grade Shakespearean play I will be directing this spring - "A Midsummer Night's Dream".

B.A. Dance and English Education, UMass/Amherst.
M.A. School of Education and Human Development with a concentration in dance (full scholarship plus stipend) - George Washington University.
B.A. Elementary Education, Belmont Abbey College.

Got a problem with high standards and academic achievement, pal?