Dr. Heath E. Morrison announced a reorganization of the central offices in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools June 18 that will enable the district to better serve students and schools. The reorganization shifts the district from six academic zones to seven learning communities. It also restructures the central offices to provide stronger support to district schools and places the deputy superintendent, Ann Clark, in charge of organizational effectiveness and strategic planning.
“Our restructured central services will change the CMS academic-zone structure, as well as the reporting structure for several departments,” Dr. Morrison, superintendent of CMS, said. “We are reshaping, renaming and restructuring our zones to make seven learning communities from the existing six zones. The learning communities will be based on school feeder patterns so that a child who begins in kindergarten will attend schools in a single learning community all the way to graduation. This will enable schools to make the transition from elementary or K-8 into middle or high school seamless and smooth for students.”
The reorganization follows a year of careful study and evaluation of how the district supports its schools, he said. It also reflects feedback from parents, the public, task forces, schools and especially principals.
“Our principals provided significant feedback on the support they need to best serve students and teachers,” Morrison added. “They were involved in everything from the feeder pattern design to the selection of the new title for zone superintendents.” The new structure is budget-neutral. To support the reorganization and the one new community superintendent position, Morrison repurposed some positions and used funds from his superintendent’s new initiatives budget.
Morrison said that since he arrived in CMS in July 2012, he had been talking regularly with the executive leadership team and principals about better ways to provide strong support and services to schools.
“These conversations reflected three core beliefs: Schools are the unit of academic transformation and achievement for our students; every CMS employee and functional area is critical in our efforts to improve services to schools, and improving our organizational effectiveness will strengthen our service delivery,” he said. “Our commitment to serving schools is reflected in our renaming of all central offices so that each one has services in its name.”
Under Dr. Morrison’s plan, there will be the following central offices:
Chief of Staff Earnest Winston will continue to manage Community Partnerships & Family Engagement and Board Services.
The learning communities will include high schools and the elementary, middle and K-8 schools that feed the high schools. The seven communities, their superintendents and their high schools are:
The reorganizational changes will take effect July 1.