CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- From the day Peter Gorman arrived in Charlotte five years ago, the CMS superintendent had been a man on the move - often putting his job ahead of sleep. “All I’m doing is working now,” said Gorman in 2006.
When Gorman arrived, Charlotte was booming. He quickly made his mark by decentralizing CMS to put resources and administrators closer to parents. He also reassigned principals from high performing schools to struggling schools, including his own daughter's principal.
“They’re veterans. They’re savvy. They’ve got that experience. Also, they’ve got a tremendous record of success,” said Gorman.
Gorman’s initiatives attracted national supporters like U.S. Education Secretary Arnie Duncan. But he frequently faced criticism here at home.
Last November, Gorman’s decision to close and consolidate schools resulted in public outcry. Charlotte NAACP President Kojo Nantambu said, “They’re doing it to the black community. They’re doing it to minorities and they don’t care.”
Gorman’s recent “pay for performance” plan for teachers has resulted in an employee backlash.
Gorman was once in the classroom himself. He has been a teacher, a principal, and a superintendent in Florida and California - but said he plans to stay in Charlotte. “My family and I look forward to being part of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg community for many years to come,” he said.