CMS wants $33.7 million to protect students - | WBTV Charlotte

CMS wants $33.7 million to protect students


Charlotte-Mecklenburg school (CMS) district is asking the county for $33.7 million to help improve security at all of its nearly 160 campuses.

"We know a safe environment is one of the prerequisites you need," CMS Board chairperson Mary McCary said. "For children to learn and for staff to do their best."

CMS Chief Operating Officer Millard House unveiled the plan to county commissioners on Tuesday. The plan includes $16 million for camera at elementary and middle schools, $10 million for fencing around mobiles, $1.2 million electronic entry at each school,$3 million for fencing around buildings, $2.5 million to upgrade CMS' police radios, $821,000 to increase bandwidth and $240,000 software to conduct immediate background checks on school visitors.

The money to pay for these improvements will come from $40 million in unspent bond money.

"I want to know what that money was allocated for." County commissioner Vilma Leake said.

Commissioners asked CMS to prioritize its list, just in case commissioners didn't want to spend all the money at one time.

In the presentation House said he knew money could be an issue, that why CMS didn't include paying for a School Resource Officer in every elementary school in his plan.

CMS did warn the county there could be continued cost annually for the security improvements.

The county could vote on releasing the money in March. If they approve the plan, security changes could happen in August for CMS.

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