WBTV Speak Out Editorial: HB 514 - For Students or Politicians?

"Speak Out" is an expression of opinion from the Editorial Board of WBTV, and is presented by General Manager, Scott Dempsey.

House Bill 514 is getting lots of attention these days.

The towns of Matthews, Mint Hill, Huntersville, and Cornelius all decided to join the bill that would give them the authority to break away from the Charlotte Mecklenburg School District,  create their own charter school district and raise taxes if needed to support the charter schools.

Town leaders say this bill gives them options.

They say CMS is not responding to their needs.

Town leaders claim if the General Assembly passes House Bill 514 - they will only enact it if CMS officials do something they don't agree with.

The question we have is - does this bill benefit students or politicians?

We are leaning toward the politicians.

Here's why.

The majority of the parents who have spoken say they are against the bill.

They are pleased with the schools in their towns, but town leaders supported it anyway.

The schools in Matthews, Mint Hill, Huntersville, and Cornelius have the most effective teachers, up to date resources, and extra opportunities that other CMS schools don't have.

So why the bill?

We tell unhappy town leaders and parents to use the process that's already in place to get your concerns met.

There is an elected CMS school board member who is responsible to get your problems resolved for that area and to get the job done.

We don't think a bill is needed every time people don't get their way.

What do you think about House Bill 514?

We say contact your State lawmaker and voice your opinion.

Tell us what YOU think. SpeakOut@wbtv.com.