Breaking the Link

  • Help create the next steps for K-12 education!

    A major focus of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) strategic plan is breaking the link between poverty and academic achievement, so we can close gaps and reach educational equity in our community.

    To give everyone in the community shared access to information about where we are today, CMS has released "Breaking the Link," an annual district-wide analysis of connections between poverty and school outcomes. "Breaking the Link" provides a basis for action by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, students, parents, teachers, staff, community partners and YOU!

    In Pursuit of Equity

    A 2013 study conducted by Harvard University and the University of California, Berkeley, examined economic mobility in the largest 50 cities in the United States. Charlotte was 50th, a finding that confirmed what many had observed anecdotally: If you are born poor in Charlotte, you are likely to stay that way.

    The economic-mobility study's findings sparked alarm and resulted in the formation of an Opportunity Task Force that issued a report in March 2017. This report purposely does not offer proposals or policies for reform. Instead, it seeks to provide a solid, data-based picture of our schools with the most recent data available. And will help the district, and the community, make wise and informed decisions on reform and advance our understanding of how to break the link between poverty, race, and academic performance.

    "Breaking the Link" is an annual examination of our progress on Equity. Why Equity Matters is a summary that provides context.

    The team of authors who worked on the reports below approached the assignment with these broad questions:

    • What are the racial and income demographics of CMS?
      • We wanted to examine the differences in our schools' income and racial demographics.
    • What are CMS outcomes?
      • We wanted to examine how students have performed academically on measures disaggregated by school poverty and race.