Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) is excited to bring two new magnet school options for families, opening in fall of 2023. The Voice Your Choice website was created as part of the community engagement process for the openings of two new magnet schools – E.E. Waddell High School and Lincoln Heights Elementary School. After organizing small-group conversations and collecting community feedback through the CMS Magnet Voices website, the CMS School Choice Team considered everyone’s thoughts and suggestions and produced a list of magnet theme scenarios for the new schools.

Future E.E. Waddell High School

Waddell is a 71 classroom high school facility located at 7030 Nations Ford Road that can support up to 1,775 high school students. Previously, the facility was used as a K-8 Language Academy that has since moved to a new facility in fall 2021. Currently, it houses Charlotte Mecklenburg Virtual Elementary and Middle Schools, whose permanent homes will be identified for fall 2022. In the fall of 2023, this building will reopen as a new magnet school in CMS.

Future Lincoln Heights Elementary School

Lincoln Heights is a 39 classroom facility located within the Bruns Elementary attendance area at 1900 Newcastle Street. Once used as a facility for students with special needs, the facility has been occupied by Shamrock Gardens Elementary (moving to a new facility for fall 2022) and Charlotte Mecklenburg Virtual High School (permanent home will be identified for fall 2022). In the fall of 2023, this building will reopen as a new magnet school in CMS.

Socioeconomic Diversity

CMS Board of Education’s goals for student assignment reference equitable access to quality schools and decreasing the number of schools with high concentrations of poor and high needs students. Factors such as family income, parental education attainment and English language ability can, together, influence learning environments. Individual student capacity and potential for learning is not correlated to socioeconomic status, but rather there are group effects when large concentrations of students who share similar socioeconomic factors learn together. CMS School Choice prioritizes seats across socioeconomic status (SES) groups in a way that contributes to increased SES diversity.

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This community engagement process is called the Local Voices Network (LVN). LVN is managed by Cortico, a non-profit 501(c)(3) connected with the MIT Center for Constructive Communication whose mission is to bring underheard voices – through a combination of human listening and machine learning – systematically into the center of public dialogue and decision making.