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Charlotte Area News

CMS Wins Broad Prize

Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools has won the Broad Prize for Urban Education for the district's efforts to improve students' learning. The award comes with $550,000 in scholarships for needy students who have made substantial academic gains. During the ceremony, U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan said CMS stands out. "Charlotte Mecklenburg Public Schools narrowed more ethnic achievement gaps faster than other districts in North Carolina, particularly for African American students," said Duncan. "Through a strategic staffing initiative, Charlotte-Mecklenburg sends its best teachers and principals to its struggling schools." The Broad prize is given to urban districts that have boosted student learning, while narrowing achievement gaps between minorities and white students. It also takes into account a district's policies. The foundation sent researchers to Charlotte earlier this year for a week to talk with principals, teachers and administrators. This is the third year CMS has been in the running for the prize. Last year, it won $250,000 in scholarship money. But over the past few years, the district has received about $3 million from the Broad Foundation to analyze data and test students. The scholarships will be in amounts up to $20,000 and will go to eligible seniors this year to help pay for college or trade school.