CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The first phase of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools student reassignment plan is moving forward.

Wednesday night, the CMS Board voted unanimously to approve phase one of its plan that's aimed to increase school choice by moving students out of poorly-performing schools and into more magnet programs. .

It's been a long time coming, and it's something a lot of parents have been very concerned about.

There have been town hall talks and community meetings; it has been in the works for more than a year.

School board member Elyse Dashew said, "I've been working on this since even before I was elected."

The school board finally voted Wednesday night on phase one of the CMS student assignment plan.

"Bottom line: More magnet schools, more options."

The Vice Chair of the school board says the board as a whole is behind the idea, which is meant to help give every student better access to magnet schools-- especially kids in underperforming schools.

"We're expanding those programs, we're also bringing in new programs known to work around the country that the community is telling us they're looking for."

The hope is to bridge the gap between the haves and have-nots.

"We are in a world where poverty is concentrated like never before. [In the] old days, all income levels went to school together-- now poverty [is] concentrated."

Parents will have to use the lottery system beginning in January to get their child enrolled in a specific school.

"We have, really, as a board, come together around a plan I think is gonna work."

Phase two is when we start talking about re-drawing maps of where kids go to school-- that will, no doubt, be controversial.