This summer, pre-kindergarten programs, English as a second language and the magnet schools office relocated to the Smith Administrative Center (formerly Smith Language Academy), 1600 Tyvola Road in Charlotte. The location has changed, but phone and fax numbers have not for parents who need to verify student information.
In addition to that notification, CMS has compiled a brief list of reminders for parents and students preparing for the return to school. The CMS checklist includes:
• Encouraging parents to update their contact information on file at the school. In the case of an emergency, this information is imperative for a student's safety. It also allows the school to keep families notified of changes.
• Review the 2012-13 CMS bell schedule. In order to operate buses more efficiently, CMS is continuing the practice of establishing different start and dismissal times at various schools. The practice allows CMS to operate the schools using fewer buses and bus drivers. For the coming school year, daily bell schedules for elementary, middle and high schools in north Mecklenburg are:
Elementary Schools: J.V. Washam, Barnette and Huntersville, 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.; Cornelius and Davidson, 8:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m.; Blythe and Long Creek, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.; and Torrence Creek, 8:15 a.m. to 3:15 p.m.
Middle Schools: Bailey, Bradley and J.M. Alexander, 9:15 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.
High Schools: Hopewell, Hough and North Mecklenburg, 7:15 a.m. to 2:15 p.m.
For more information about specific schools, including open house plans and other details related to "back to school" activities — including school supply checklists created for each school and each grade level — visit individual school pages accessed through the CMS website at www.cms.k12.nc.us. Bell schedules for other schools in CMS can also be found on the school system's website.
• For those parents who need to enroll their children in school, North Carolina law requires that students five years of age on or before Aug. 31 be enrolled for kindergarten.
• Families new to CMS may find the information they need through the CMS web site. The section for newcomers will provide parents and students with details about enrollment, school zones and the Charlotte area.
• Immunizations will be a key factor when preparing kindergarten students and sixth graders for the school year. All students entering kindergarten must present a health assessment (physical exam report) by the first day of school. The assessment must have been completed within 12 months of school entry. A certificate of immunizations must be presented on the first day of school by a parent or guardian. Health clinics are available throughout Mecklenburg County with English and Spanish listings.
• And finally, to help kick start the new school year, North Carolina will offer its annual back-to-school, tax-free shopping weekend from Aug. 3-5. Consumers can save money by purchasing items such as clothing, school supplies and computers during the tax holiday.
State statutes provide an exemption for certain items of tangible personal property sold between 12:01 a.m. on the first Friday in August and 11:59 p.m. the following Sunday. Clothing, footwear and school supplies of $100 or less per item; school instructional materials of $300 or less per item; sports and recreation equipment of $50 or less per item, computers of $3,500 or less per item; and computer supplies of $250 or less per item will be exempt. Clothing accessories, jewelry, cosmetics, protective equipment, wallets, furniture, items used in a trade or business, and rentals are not covered by the exemption and will be subject to the applicable tax. For more information about which exact purchases are, and are not, tax exempt, visit www.dornc.com.
CMS facilities in the north Mecklenburg community are assigned to the district's Northeast Zone. The Northeast Zone offices are at 9425 Midas Springs Road in Huntersville and the telephone number is 980-344-7100.
Dawn Robinson is the area superintendent and Mark Bosco is executive director. Schools in the Northeast Zone include:
Elementary Schools: Barnette, Blythe, Cornelius, Croft, David Cox Road, Davidson, Highland Creek, Huntersville, J.V. Washam, John Motley Morehead STEM Academy, Long Creek, Mallard Creek, Military and Global Leadership Academy at Marie G. Davis, Mountain Island, River Oaks Academy, Stoney Creek, Torrence Creek and University Meadows.
Middle Schools: Bailey, Bradley, J.M. Alexander, John Motley Morehead, Military and Global Leadership Academy, Northwest School of the Arts, Piedmont and Ridge Road.
High Schools: Hopewell, Mallard Creek, Military and Global Leadership Academy, North Mecklenburg, Northwest School of the Arts and Hough.
Morrison begins district meetings
The new superintendent of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools has begun the process of hearing first-hand about priorities, concerns and suggestions for the future of the school system.
Monday night, Heath Morrison held the first of six "employee only" gatherings at North Mecklenburg High School in Huntersville. While access to the event was limited to CMS staff members, Morrison reported that questions and discussions from the session covered many topics, including pay raises, elementary and middle school curriculums and teacher transfer procedures.
Morrison's next scheduled meeting in north Mecklenburg is a community town hall session planned for Thursday, Oct. 4 at Hopewell High School on Beatties Ford Road. All the meetings will begin at 6 p.m.
The purpose of the meetings — the employee-only sessions as well as the community town hall events — is to provide individuals the opportunity to express concerns, ask questions and be involved in discussions related to CMS's plans.
Other meetings planned include a Tuesday, Oct. 2, employee-only meeting at West Charlotte High School and a Monday, Oct. 29, town hall session at Vance High School.
Additional information and a complete meeting schedule is available at www.cms.k12.nc.us.
Showmars hosts school item drive
The first day of classes for students usually means fresh pens and pencils, a shiny new book bag and back to school shopping trips. For many however, that is not the case. In Mecklenburg County, more than half of all students are economically disadvantaged and many of those students will show up empty handed on the first day of school in August.
To help the students who need assistance, and in honor of 30 successful years of business in the greater Charlotte region, Showmars is partnering with a Charlotte television station for the 16th annual School Tools Campaign.
School Tools is the largest school supply drive in the area helping thousands of local kids receive the school supplies they need to start a productive school year properly equipped. The campaign runs through August.
Last year, the School Tools Campaign helped collect more than 472,000 items for school use and supplies were distributed to students in more than 20 counties.
All month, a School Tools barrel will be located at every Showmars restaurant including the three Lake Norman-area locations, 9605 Sherrill Estates Road in the Shops on Statesville in Huntersville, 138 Williamson Road in Mooresville; and 7260 N.C. 73 in Denver.
Basic school supplies including pens, pencils, glue sticks, markers and book bags will be accepted. Donations can be delivered to any store and monetary donations can be made at www.school-tools.org.
O'Nan serves as N.C. page
A local high school student recently completed a summer tour of duty learning the inner workings of the North Carolina State Legislature.
Rayna O'Nan, a student at Hough High School on Bailey Road in Cornelius, served as a page for the North Carolina House of Representatives.
O'Nan is the daughter of Harry and Cathy O'Nan of Cornelius and was sponsored as a page by Speaker of the House Thom Tillis of Cornelius. Tillis appoints pages and introduces each one to members and citizens in the House gallery at the start of each week.
For decades, the N.C. House has relied on the services of pages, who help deliver bills and amendments for representatives during daily sessions and committee meetings, offer assistance in individual representatives' offices and run errands in the Legislative buildings. Pages spend a full week at the General Assembly, assisting members and their staff and learning about the structure and procedures of North Carolina government.
DDS's King attends GU sports program
An introduction to the behind-the-scenes world of sports management was among the summer highlights for Davidson Day School student Niko King. A rising sophomore at DDS, King took part in Georgetown University's Sport Management Institute.
The specialized program for selected high school students provides a look in the growing career options in the sports industry — a $250 billion a year business. Each student taking part in the SMI got a first-hand look at how events on the field, in the front office and behind the cameras are linked to board rooms, retail locations and homes across the country. The program targeted various subject areas including marketing, leadership, business law, sponsorships, finance, community relations, media, team and league player promotions and brand management.
The eight-day program included trips to the fields and offices of the Washington Nationals Major League Baseball team and the Washington Redskins National Football League team. Participants also had the opportunity to use facilities on the Georgetown campus and to meet current and past GU athletes.
For King, the camp experience was just part of his sports-related summer. A basketball player at DDS, King is also a member of the Charlotte Reign, a 15U (Division 1) AAU basketball team that recently won first place in the (16U) championship games at the CBC's Adidas Measuring Stick and Summer Slam Tournaments in the Charlotte area.
Other events on King's summer schedule included work at Davidson Day School's Youth Basketball Camp and Grace Covenant Church's Vacation Bible School program.