Matthews commissioners pass resolution for neighborhood schools

Matthews Council threatens to separate from CMS

MATTHEWS, NC (WBTV) - The Board of Commissioners in the Town of Matthews on Monday night voted unanimously to pass a resolution demanding neighborhood schools, or have Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) face the consequences of a split.

"I think families should have the choice where they go to school. My family moved to Matthews so we could send our children to quality schools," said Commissioner Christopher Melton. "I'm absolutely in favor of the separation from Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools if they don't listen to what we as parents, family members and community leaders have said."

Parents and town officials have said they're concerned that children will be sent to schools far away from home - now that CMS is studying a student assignment plan.

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In fact, officials in Matthews are so worried they say they're ready to break away from CMS and form the Matthews School District.

The resolution says town officials want CMS' Board of Education to reaffirm the guiding principles for student assignment that guarantees every child will attend a school close to home, or their parents jobs, or parents choice of a magnet school.

The resolution also says the town board and the Mayor will work with legislators to split up CMS into north, middle and south districts or have Matthews break away from CMS and form a local district.

"I think it's got teeth because we're asking questions," Mayor James Taylor said of the resolution. "We're trying to find out what we can do, and what our options are. If we don't ask the questions, we won't have any answers."

The Mayor said they also need to find out how the split and, or, complete breakaway will impact them in terms of the cost and unintended consequences.

"We'll also get the community involved to find out whether or not this is something that is just the board that is interested in it or is it the community that wants to get behind it," said Mayor Taylor.

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