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Schools and Diversity

Charlotte, North...
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Schools and Diversity

We are considering a move to Charlotte from NYC (I am a native Chicagoan; my husband is from Brooklyn). I have 2 areas of concern that I would appreciate input on: 1.) Our 8-year old qualifies as gifted and talented. From basic research re Charlotte/Mecklenberg I see several public schools (elementary through HS) that have established programs for this population, including several high schools with International Baccaluareate approval as well as quite a few listed on Newsweek's Top High Schools list. Based on what I read in this forum, however, there may be other school districts that can better serve our daughter's needs. Any thoughts? We're looking for more than a weekly "pull-out program;" we would like higher-level learning in general. 2.) We are in the process of adopting from China. Where in the Charlotte area might there be a diverse population and the most acceptance for a multi-racial family--that also addresses our education concerns? Thank you.

Matthews
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1. Re: Schools and Diversity

Go private; the public schools in Charlotte are in a state of flux right now. There will be a lot of changes in the near future, you would not want to your child caught up in those changes.

NC
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2. Re: Schools and Diversity

Gaston County - adjacent to Charlotte has a budding IB program. York-Chester Middle School has an excellent International Studies program which will be continued at Hunter Huss High School this fall. Check the Gaston County Schools website for more info. I agree that Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools should be avoided if possible. There are many good private schools in Charlotte.

NC
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3. Re: Schools and Diversity

Oh yes....I can't think of any area in the region that would NOT welcome you!

Orlando
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4. Re: Schools and Diversity

Hi Messford, my husband and I are considering relocating from Orlando to Charlotte. He's originally from NY (Westchester Cty) and still has family in Brooklyn and Long Island. We just adopted two children from Russia last Nov. 2004. Your post caught my eye.

Pls. let me know what Charlotte areas you consider. We are very interested in school systems as well as identifying good areas/good homes for the value. But we'd also be most interested in meeting other int'l adoptive families (as well as other families with young children) for the sake of our children so that they can grow up to know other families who grew through int'l adoption.

Best of luck, and if I find anything, I'll share as well.

Charlotte, North...
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5. Re: Schools and Diversity

Thanks to everyone for the input. We are planning a "scouting" trip to Charlotte and Atlanta later this summer and hope to get many of our questions answered. To mikiment: we have been doing lots of internet research on communities all around the Charlotte area--and are hoping that a couple of them will "stand out" once we visit. Right now we are in the early stages and having not been to either city (except Charlotte about 20 years ago before its recent growth)--it's hard to discern what a place is really like from all the promotional info available. Schools will be at the center of our decision. We know we will never find the diversity we now experience in NYC but we are willing to trade it, if necessary, for lifestyle, cost of living, less hectic pace, etc. I will contact you again after we visit to let you know what we learn--hopefully a few days can give us a good flavor of the city. Thanks.

New Jersey
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6. Re: Schools and Diversity

I cannot believe I read your post! We are a multi-racial family from very diverse NJ considering a move to Charlotte, NC. And we're also taking a scouting trip this summer. Please email me! renee625@comcast.net

NC
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7. Re: Schools and Diversity

Re: I think you will be surprised at the diversity here. This region teems with immigrant populations from all over the world.

Charlotte, NC
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8. Re: Schools and Diversity

First of all let me warn you that the better private schools are not very diverse. Secondly you need to look into the specific schools for the neighborhoods you are interested in to find out about the TD (talent development, that's what we call our gifted) programs. At my daughter's elementary school, there were so many students that qualified for TD that they had TD classes for math and language arts every day. They were with their TD class for the entire day except for PE and elective time and 45 minutes for science/social studies. That sort of thing depends on the specific school. For all middle schools your child will be placed in a language arts and math course based on his test scores. They will be tracked that way throughout 6-8 grade. We offer two levels of advanced placement courses in middle school, "accelerated" and "scholars." The high schools will offer many levels of advanced courses as well. The IB programs are all part of our magnet/ choice plan. They are not always easy to get into. When applying you need to look for full magnet and not "partial magnet" programs. The partial programs could have less than 20% of the school's population enrolled in the program and thus a diminished focus on the program, IMHO. By the way I am a Mecklenburg county public school teacher who teaches scholar's level math in middle school. There are excellent schools in our system, and they are not all located on the south side of the county. The problem is you have to know which neighborhoods to move into so that you will be guaranteed a spot in these superior schools. Because it is so tricky, it is common for people to make general recommendations such as, "stay away from the public schools."

Charlotte, North...
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9. Re: Schools and Diversity

Thanks, alarrick, for your response--very helpful information. I will definitely hang on to your message as we move forward.

North Carolina
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10. Re: Schools and Diversity

I to have a gifted and talented kid. He is starting fourth grade this year at a charter school for gifted kids. Bonus that they teach Spanish and Mandarin. It's called Metrolina Scholar's Academy and is located in Ballantyne. (We live in Matthews) We have two kids born to us and two from China so we hope our sons (son #2 is on the waiting list for Metrolina) will help us with getting around in China when we visit!!

BTW, our sons were in the Charlotte Mecklenberg Schoola nd took oart in teh Pull out prgram there and it just wasn't enough for son #1. he was bored. This school is geared toward kids like him. E-mail me privately if you need any more info.