CHARLOTTE, NC. — Interim CMS Superintendent Hugh Hattabaugh says he’s ready to work. His main focus in the new gig is closing the achievement gaps, boosting reading levels retaining and recuring teachers, and reorganizing. An issue the district has to address is violence in schools and weapons being brought on campuses. At least 23 guns have been found so far this year. Hattabaugh says he plans to have staff boots on the ground near buses.
“You have to have a visible person there whether it’s an assistant principal, principal, security and I don’t know how many times kids will get off the bus, they want to be discreet because they’ve got to go back to the neighborhood and they don’t want to be known that they gave the information to an adult because we can’t protect them there. So they’re very discreet,” Hattabaugh says.
The Superintendent says he wants to focus on closing economic gaps and in order to do that you need to make an investment in student achievement scores. In Tuesday’s board of education meeting, the board approved a $2 billion budget plan which includes a request for a $40 million increase from Mecklenburg county. The board wants to make teacher pay to the highest in the state by increasing local supplements.
WCCB asked Hattabaugh how he plans to be more transparent with teachers.
“We have to build a really good relationship with our principles at this level and that’s why I was talking in there, we’re going to look at increasing learning communities so will have fewer schools that the area superintendents are having to support.”
Hattabaugh says the district is working to hire a chief of communications to help the district be more transparent with the community parents and other stakeholders.