CMS explains why they cut 200 jobs while superintendent got raise

Nation and World News

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE)- Charlotte-Mecklenburg School superintendent Earnest Winston is getting a raise, on the same night the school board votes to cut more than 200 jobs.

The superintendent’s salary comes from a separate pot of money and the after school programs are losing lots of money, but one school board chairwoman says it’s fair to ask ‘why now?’

Winston got a pay bump of about $8,000. On the same night, the school board voted to cut the jobs of more than 200 employees with the after-school program and close 70 sites.

“What do you say to the employees who say you gave the big boss a big raise and my job is getting cut?” FOX 46’s Robin Kanady asked CMS School Board Chairperson Elyse Dashew.

“I know that is hard to hear, he did get an $8,000 raise which is a lot of money, I get that, when you compare his position to his counterparts at the city or the county, he’s now making $288,000, they make close to $400,000,” Dashew said.

FOX 46 checked and found Charlotte City Manager Marcus Jones makes just over $350,000. Mecklenburg County Manager Dena Diorio has about the same annual salary and the Superintendent of Wake County, a school district of comparable size in Raleigh, makes just under $300,000 a year.

“I get that that is tough to hear when I put myself in the position of our wonderful ASEP employees, but at the same time, we need that consistency, we need consistent leadership at the top,” Dashew said.  

The school board chair also says not enough students are enrolling in CMS’s after-school programs during the pandemic.

Those who are fully remote don’t need after-school care and some parents are working from home and also don’t need the programs for their students.

Parents pay for the program and it is bleeding money. The board says it’s losing more than $800,000 a month.

The school board chair says human resources is working to try and hire some of the workers who are losing their jobs in the after-school programs for other open positions in the district.

If your student’s program site is closing, you may be able to re-locate to another site, but you’ll have to provide transportation.

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