CMS parents start petition over district blocking transportation

CMS parents start petition over district blocking transportation

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Some parents at John Morehead STEM Academy are upset Charlotte-Mecklenburg School (CMS) District discontinued transportation for some students.

Parents say this year CMS stopped transportation for students living outside the school's transportation zone. Parents are troubled by what CMS told them concerning their need for transportation to and from school.

"If we want transportation, then we have to transfer our student to McClintock STEM Academy," parent Sherrika Walton said. "And that's very unfortunate - then that would be a disruption on the education they received at Morehead."

Parents living outside the zone were told if they want to stay at Morehead STEM, then they would have to provide their own transportation.

"It's a hardship," Walton said. "It's very inconvenient, especially when you have parents who do not drive, when you have parents who are working."

Courtney Curtis has three children at Morehead STEM. She lives outside the school's transportation zone and takes her children to school every day. She thinks CMS made a mistake by not offering all students transportation.

"Something should be done," Curtis said. "It's unfair."

Curtis is worried if she can't continue to provide transportation, her kids may have to attend their home school. She doesn't want that to happen, and says it is a low-performing school. Her son is completing his last year at Morehead.

"I want to keep them where they have been and not uproot my children," she said. "They are a little frightened about changing schools. We know all the teachers. We have relationships."

CMS said it made the decision a few years ago and that parents should have been prepared. Some parents argue they didn't receive notice about the transportation change for this year. CMS Superintendent Dr. Clayton Wilcox says the district will look into why the change happened.

"We want to look at it," Wilcox said. "Was there an economic reason for doing that? Was that the driving force behind it? Was the decision made to drive people to another set of choices? And I think we owe it to mom - this is why we made the decision."

Parents say they would be happy if CMS brought back the shuttle stop so students could be dropped off and picked up. They say that would be a compromise. Parents argue CMS' website listed shuttle service for Morehead STEM, but it was yanked when parents brought it to the district's attention.

"There have been a lot of inconsistencies with the communication," Walton said.

There is no word when CMS will come back with its findings, but Wilcox is telling parents not to get their hopes up.

"I don't think you'll see that change," Wilcox said, "But I've been wrong before here in this district, so we'll take a look."

Parents are not giving up. They have started an online petition on

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