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An in-depth look at our region's emerging economic, social, political and cultural identity.

Project LIFT Plans To Extend Work For At Least A Sixth Year

Lisa Worf
West Charlotte High School

Project LIFT plans to continue working with West Charlotte High School and the schools that feed into it for at least a sixth year. 

The schools have seen only slight improvements in test scores since Project LIFT started nearly four years ago. But the group of philanthropists and community members say they’ve seen enough positive results to believe giving the strategies more time to develop will lead to strong outcomes.

Project LIFT Co-chair Stick Williams said earlier this year, the group is talking about extending its work several more years.

“You probably will see some differences. We’re not going to be able to afford everything that we’ve done. So we’re going to probably just pare down to a group of the things we’ve seen be very, very successful and continue with those,” said Williams. “Who knows, maybe expand into some additional schools and attract some other donors?”

Project LIFT has used about half of the $55 million it raised to fund several efforts including creating new positions that help coach teachers, expanding the school year for some schools, and providing health and counseling services for students and their families.

The schools have made slight gains in some subjects, but still largely fall below scores at other struggling CMS schools.

The CMS board would have to approve any extension of Project LIFT.     

Lisa Worf traded the Midwest for Charlotte in 2006 to take a job at WFAE. She worked with public TV in Detroit and taught English in Austria before making her way to radio. Lisa graduated from University of Chicago with a bachelor’s degree in English.