CMS students, parents form human chain to protest school boundary changes

CHARLOTTE — Students and parents from Myers Park High School, Alexander Graham Middle School, and Sharon Elementary School formed a human chain in south Charlotte.

From Chopper 9 Skyzoom, we could see dozens of students and parents linked by the hands on Tuesday afternoon.

It’s in protest of current plans to send some students to South Mecklenburg High School as part of south county school boundary changes.

It wasn’t just parents who were vocal; students were as well.


“I think it was all a little sudden, and everyone took it by shock and it was kind of, ‘oh this is really last minute and drastic,’” said student Sicily Paino.

“I don’t really want to go there because I’ve always been next to Myers Park all of middle,” said student Kate Stokes.

“As you can see behind me, it’s a really small distance between AG and Myers Park,” said parent Ashley Stokes.

Alexander Graham and Myers Park share a campus, and the students in question typically are in the feeder pattern of going to those two schools. They hoped Tuesday’s demonstration showed it makes more sense to have rising freshmen stay on the same campus, instead of going to South Meck 15 minutes away.

“We’re trying to illustrate how difficult this might be for a child who just recently learned this news to -- right before high school starts -- to go to a new place,” Ashley Stokes said.

She uses the word “recently” because the proposal to have some students assigned to South Meck after leaving AG only appeared in the final draft map.

“Both of my kids went to Selwyn Elementary, both of them are at AG. I’d like for both of them to go to Myers Park,” said parent Tara Hicks.

“Kind of wondering how it came about -- we weren’t in the drafts at all up to that point, and then all of sudden, here we are,” she added.

Though Ashley Stokes said she understands the re-assignment process requires give and take, she’s still hoping the show of protest might help to sway some minds.

“Put us back to where we were,” she said. “We weren’t on any drafts previously, and putting the kids back on to this campus, there’s no real ripple effect down the chain.”

The school board will decide whether to approve the plan on June 6. To read more about it, click here.

(WATCH PREVIOUS: Vote scheduled over boundaries of crowded south Charlotte high schools)

Jonathan Lowe

Jonathan Lowe, wsoctv.com

Jonathan is a reporter for WSOC-TV.