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Here's how CMS plans to use COVID-19 relief funds in the budget for next school year

The CMS Board of Education is now seeking to give students what they need to get back on track.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners is taking a closer look at the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools budget for the next school year.

The budget maps out how COVID-19 relief funding would be used and how it would benefit students. This budget includes more than usual due to the pandemic, but it makes it clear the district is trying to catch students up in the classroom after a different kind of year of learning.

“We are not where we were two years ago," CMS Superintendent Earnest Winston said to the board of county commissioners. "Students have suffered during this pandemic, and we must make up ground.”

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About 50,000 students within the district are considered academically at-risk.
The opportunity gaps for Black and brown students that existed before the pandemic have only widened due to the pandemic. Additionally, higher numbers of students are struggling with social and emotional issues. 

That's why CMS plans to use COVID-19 relief funds to address the needs created by the pandemic, investing in things like a summer program to catch students up academically, technology to upgrade old Chromebooks, and health and safety protocol to prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19.

The CMS Board of Education is now seeking to give students what they need to get back on track.

There was also some confusion about a $2.1 million line item for security enhancements. This was unintentionally left out of the presentation when the school board initially approved the budget, but the school board rectified the situation to include it at an emergency meeting this morning.

Contact Kendall Morris at kmorris2@wcnc.com and follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.