CMS superintendent greets teachers and talks about race relations

CMS superintendent greets teachers and talks about race relations
(Dedrick Russell | WBTV)
(Dedrick Russell | WBTV)

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Charlotte Mecklenburg School (CMS) Superintendent Dr. Clayton Wilcox greeted teachers Wednesday morning on their first day back as they prepare for the first day of school.

Wilcox thanked the teachers for the work they are about to do this school year. Teachers at four CMS schools were treated with breakfast from Bojangles'.

Bojangles' was founded in 1977 and is celebrating its 40th anniversary. That's why the restaurant chain sent 77 biscuits to the schools for the teachers.

"I don't think they get near enough credit for what they do for our future leaders," Bojangles CEO Clifton Rutledge said. "For us to come and just be a small part this day that they're putting their rooms back together, we don't want them to worry about having to be hungry so we took care of that for them this morning."

Piedmont IB Middle, Berewick, Sharon Road, and Piney Grove Elementary schools got a visit from Bojangles'. Piney Grove and Sharon Road Elementary were both built in 1977, the same year Bojangles' started. The CEO says giving back to the community is important.

"We don't expect anything back from it," Rutledge said. "It's again community relations that allows us to be here 40 years."

After Wilcox greeted the teachers, Charlotte's top educator talked to the media about getting ready for the school year in the midst of race relations making headlines. Wilcox was asked about the race incident that happened in Charlottesville, VA and how that could impact students in CMS.

"We have been working hard over the years to talk about cultural competency," CMS Superintendent Dr. Clayton Wilcox said. "How to navigate and celebrate different cultures, so I am trusting that the great majority of our teachers will do this well, and those who are struggling will ask for support and ask for help and we will gladly provide that to them."

Wilcox says when he walked in the room at Piedmont IB Middle Wednesday morning and saw a room full of teachers ready to get to work, he was encouraged.

"I know that we are better than the public discourse right now." Wilcox said.

The superintendent said CMS is ready to receive the students and hope they can learn from what is happening with race relations in America.

"I hope the young people learn that we are more alike than we are different," Wilcox said. "We ought to react more with kindness and understanding. I hope we can help our young people to be critical consumers of information and not just look at the latest headline and say that is the way America feels."

CMS starts classes August 28th.

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