Dr. Clayton Wilcox, superintendent of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, said the district is ready to begin the projects to be funded by the 2017 bond referendum approved by voters on Nov. 7.
"We are very grateful to the citizens of Mecklenburg County for the support given to our kids," Dr. Wilcox. "The approval of the bond request means we can begin improving schools and creating better opportunities for our students and teachers – and we're ready to go to work."
The bond request will fund 17 new schools and renovations and additions at 12 others that are among the district's oldest buildings. In all, the bond request will relieve overcrowding at 20 schools and provide 1,250 new or renovated classrooms for more than 20,000 students.
"The approval of the bond means that we will be able to expand access to some of our most popular programs," Dr. Wilcox said. "We'll also be able to create and provide learning spaces worthy of our students and our staff, expanding the scope of teaching and learning across the district."
The Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners, which put the bond on the ballot, said that it would not require raising taxes. The $922 million in funding will help Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools address pressing capital needs. The district estimates capital needs of more than $2 billion to meet the needs of students and teachers.
"We've learned a lot in the process of sharing information about the need for the bonds," Dr. Wilcox said. "We heard the community's hopes and concerns for improving the educational experiences for our children and we realize that more work remains. We will continue our commitment to delivering excellent education experiences in all of our schools."
He also said that although work would begin on the bond projects next summer, they are a multi-year series of projects.
"The voters have spoken on behalf of this community's children and have said yes to investing in students," said Mary T. McCray, chair of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education. "With this funding, we will increase academic choices for students and provide the education they need to succeed in the 21st century."
For a complete list of bond projects, click here.
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