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CMS Board Puts Raises And Bell Schedule At Top Of Budget Priorities

The Charlotte Mecklenburg School board agreed Monday teacher raises and doing away with late school dismissals should be the top budget priorities. Interim Superintendent Hugh Hattabaugh has proposed a 3 percent raise for teachers. That would total about $26 million. He hasn't recommended pushing the school day up for schools that dismiss students at 4:15. Many parents have complained that schedule has made it difficult on their family routines. Adjusting some schools' start and end times saved the district $4 million in transportation costs last year. Most school board members like Mary McCray said they want to see what it takes to shift those times back. "I know the bell scheduleswe're getting emails by the bucket loads. And we're going to have to look at something. But I do want it to be revenue-neutral if possible," says McCray. CMS is holding a public meeting on the superintendent's recommended budget next Tuesday. The board will vote April 10th on how much to ask Mecklenburg County for.