Charlotte Parent Education Guide 2021-2022

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AGRITOURISM: A Regional Farm Guide


Meet Charlotte Parent’s Teachers of the Year



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Ask a Mom: WBTV’s Molly Grantham on special needs programs, extracurriculars, and more

All About Agritourism: Teach your family about where their food comes from with a visit to a Carolina farm

Public School Districts

Why Does My Kid Struggle With Handwriting? Tips to help your child develop their handwriting skills

Private Schools

Self-Advocacy in the Age of COVID: How to teach your children to advocate for themselves in a socially distanced world


Teachers of the Year Meet the four for 2021

Charter Schools

For more local school resources, including preschools, go to EDUCATION GUIDE 2021-22 // CHARLOT TE PARENT



Meet Kids Where They Are

Remember the start of the pandemic, back in March of 2020, when the thought of having your kids home from school for two weeks was unfathomable? Both of mine came home with three weeks worth of schoolwork just in case this virus stuck around longer than we anticipated. At the time, we treated it like a supersized spring break. Surely we could ride it out until they returned to school in April.

As we transition to another school year, the classroom looks different to returning students. They’re coping with social anxiety, learning loss, mask protocols, and a new set of rules. Now more than ever, we need to meet our children where they are. This is not one-size-fits-all.


Andy Smith


Taylor Bowler


Hadley Kincaid



We all know what happened next. Parents became homeschool teachers overnight and soon “remote learning” and “Zoom classrooms” were part of the national lexicon. Two weeks turned into 10, and for many, it continued into another school year. Kids had no choice but to adapt.


Allison Hollins

Tina Battock


Scott Ferguson


Sherry Brown


Cher Wheeler


Veronica Brooks


Michelle Rowe

In these pages you’ll find a district guide and listings for the area’s public, private, and charter schools, plus a special edition of our digital series, “Ask a Mom,” with WBTV’s Molly Grantham. Vanessa Infanzon explores agritourism as a way to teach your family where their food comes from. Randi Mazzella looks at selfadvocacy in the age of Covid and shares some ways children can advocate for themselves in an increasingly virtual world. You’ll also meet Charlotte Parent’s four Teachers of the Year, nominated by readers, in a series of fun questionnaires. Maybe your child fell behind in reading and math this year, or maybe it’s time to move them to a different school. Maybe your homeschool curriculum fell short—but your kids won’t come up empty. This generation has learned that you can live through something that rocks your world off its axis and come out the other side. And if our kids have taught us anything during the last 18 months, it’s that they know how to adapt. If there’s anything I’ve learned during this ordeal, it’s that I’m not built to be a homeschool teacher. I remain in awe of the educators who work so tirelessly to meet our children where they are. I hope this Education Guide serves as a resource for you as we adjust to this new way of learning. For additional resources and guidance, visit us at




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GUIDE TO PUBLIC DISTRICTS 704-260-5600 Total enrollment:


Number of schools: Elementary Schools: 21 Middle Schools: 9 High Schools: 12


John Kopicki was sworn in as the district’s 11th superintendent in August 2021. Prior to arriving here, he had a long and successful career in public education that spanned more than 28 years in Pennsylvania. He most recently served as superintendent in Doylestown, at Central Bucks School District. Before that, he was superintendent at Altoona Area School District and Forest City Regional School District. He began his career as a high school social studies teacher in 1992, before embarking on various other roles within school systems. He received a doctoral degree in educational administration at Temple University.



FAST FACTS 2021 graduation rate is 91 percent.


Two new schools — Hickory Ridge Elementary School and West Cabarrus High School — opened in August 2020. Educational options include traditional, STEM, International Baccalaureate and language immersion programs. Cabarrus County Schools is the recipient of two U.S. Department of Education i3 grants for $3 million each. Received the Benjamin Tregoe Award for Strategic Leadership.


Cabarrus County Schools

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools 980-343-3000 Total enrollment:


Number of schools: Elementary Schools: 96 Middle Schools: 49 High Schools: 32

FAST FACTS 2021 graduation rate is 84 percent. CMS students come from 183 countries and speak 197 languages and dialects. It is the second-largest school system in North Carolina.

Gaston County Schools 704-866-6100

Total enrollment:


Number of schools: Elementary Schools: 29 Intermediate School: 1 Middle Schools: 11 High Schools: 11 Special Needs School: 1 Alternative School: 1 Virtual School: 1 SUPERINTENDENT

1:1 CMS is a leading district in integrating digital learning and teaching with a 1:1 student/ technology ratio.



Earnest Winston brings the experiences of teacher, parent, communicator and chief of staff to the role of superintendent. Winston joined CharlotteMecklenburg Schools in 2004 as an English teacher at Vance High School where he taught journalism and was adviser to the student newspaper. After two years, he moved into administration, joining the district’s communications department as an external communications supervisor. Winston served as chief of staff to two superintendents. In 2017, he was named chief community relations and engagement officer. He was appointed superintendent in 2019.

CMS offers a number of magnet programs, career academies, early and middle colleges, and other distinctive school models, each with a signature theme or program designed to engage students’ interests and talents. CMS offers 19 pathways in Career and Technical Education (CTE) to help equip students with 21st-century skills.

Jeffrey Booker has been the superintendent of Gaston County Schools since January 2014. He was awarded the Southwest Region Superintendent of the Year in 2016. Prior to being named superintendent of schools, he served as deputy superintendent for operations and was responsible for business/finance, technology, facilities and maintenance, bus transportation, and school nutrition. He has a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Virginia and a master’s degree and a doctorate degree in education from Gardner-Webb University.

FAST FACTS 2021 graduation rate was 87 percent.


The school district is the second largest employer in Gaston County with more than 3,800 employees and 1,950 classroom teachers. In the 2019-2020 academic year, the number of school choice/magnet school programs increased from six to 19 through new academy programs in six areas: career, collegiate prep, health sciences, leadership, public service, and technology and industrial engineering. New school Belmont Middle opened in August 2021. It’s among the 10 biggest school districts in North Carolina, with approximately 30,000 students. EDUCATION GUIDE 2021-22 // CHARLOT TE PARENT

7 704-872-8931 Total enrollment:


Number of schools: Elementary Schools: 19 Middle Schools: 11 High Schools: 11


Dr. Jeffery James, formerly superintendent of Stanly County Schools, is an Iredell County native and graduate of West Iredell High School. He arrived as IredellStatesville Schools’ new superintendent this summer. He was previously a special education teacher, business technology instructor, assistant principal, and principal in the system. While at Stanly County Schools, he took the district from a negative fund balance to $1.2 million in four months, through a fiscal crisis plan. When he left that district, it had $1.4 million in fund balance.


Kannapolis City Schools



2021 graduation rate is 88 percent.


Iredell-Statesville Schools ranks among the 20 largest school districts in North Carolina. In addition to traditional school settings, the district provides a wide range of educational opportunities through our choice programs specifically designed for unique student needs. Students have a 1:1 ratio of MacBook Airs for each student in grades 6-12.

1:1 Iredell-Statesville Schools performs in the top 25 percent of the school districts in North Carolina.


Total enrollment:


Number of schools: Pre-K: 1 Elementary Schools: 6 Middle School: 1 High School: 1


Dr. Daron “Chip” Buckwell is the Superintendent of the Year for the Southwest Region of North Carolina. Dr. Buckwell joined Kannapolis City Schools in 1985 and has served as a teacher, central office administrator, principal, assistant superintendent, and superintendent. He has bachelor and master’s degrees from Appalachian State University. In 2018, Dr. Buckwell was inducted into Appalachian State University’s Rhododendron Society. He also holds a doctor of education degree in school administration and instruction from Nova Southeastern University.

FAST FACTS 2020 graduation rate was 86 percent.


Kannapolis City Schools has unique partnerships with the NC Research Campus that gives students access to world-renowned researchers, internships and realworld lessons. KCS a system-wide student uniform policy. A.L. Brown High School has twice been named one of America’s best high schools by U.S. News & World Report. As a leader in STEM Education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), schools offer advanced courses, including microbiology, 3D engineering, robotics, genetics, biotechnology and oceanography.


Iredell-Statesville Schools

Lincoln County Schools 704-732-2261

Number of schools: Elementary Schools: 13 Middle Schools: 4 High Schools: 4

Total enrollment:

11,500 704-658-2530

FAST FACTS 2021 graduation rate is 94 percent.

Total enrollment: Technology Schools: 1 Alternative Schools: 1


Dr. Aaron Allen was confirmed as the new superintendent in February 2021. Prior to that, he was associate superintendent and served as the interim superintendent following the retirement of Dr. Lory Morrow. Other roles in Lincoln County Schools held by Allen include assistant superintendent for human resources, principal at West Lincoln Middle School, and assistant principal at North Lincoln High School. He began his career in 1998, as a teacher at Kings Mountain High School. He became the principal there in the subsequent years. He was named the Cleveland County Principal of the Year in 2013.

FAST FACTS 2021 graduation rate is 90.8 percent.


19 of 21 schools reporting growth measures met growth expectations. Continued focus on advanced manufacturing partnership with local economic development association. Rock Springs Elementary received an “A” rating from the North Carolina Department of Instruction.


Mooresville Graded School District


Number of schools: Elementary Schools: 3 Intermediate Schools: 2 Middle School: 1 High School: 1


Dr. Stephen Mauney was appointed superintendent of Mooresville Graded School District in August 2016. Prior to becoming superintendent, Dr. Mauney served in multiple administrative roles with the district beginning in 1999 when he became assistant principal at Mooresville High School. He started his educational career as a history teacher at Mooresville High School in 1993. Dr. Mauney received his bachelors degree in 1991 from Davidson College, his master’s degree in 1993 from Appalachian State University, and his doctorate degree in 2014 from Wingate University.

Top 10 school district in North Carolina in academic achievement Mooresville Graded School District’s name is due to the fact that when it was chartered in 1905, it had different “grade” levels. Ranked in the Top 10 in North Carolina in academic achievement for the past nine years. Continues in its reputation as a successful 1:1 program where all students are provided with a MacBook Air or iPad.


Union Elementary was recognized as a National Title One school nominee.



Fort Mill School District 803-543-2527 Total enrollment: 17,057 Number of schools: Elementary Schools: 11 Middle Schools: 6 High Schools: 3


Dr. James “Chuck” Epps’ service in public education and school experiences are broad and diverse. He has served as a teacher assistant, classroom teacher, coach, assistant principal, principal, director and assistant superintendent. He has participated in a variety of work assignments at the school, district, regional and state levels.

Lancaster County Schools 803-286-6972 Total enrollment: 13,247 Number of schools: Elementary Schools: 13 Middle Schools: 5 High Schools: 5

FAST FACTS 2021 graduation rate is more than 94 percent. Fort Mill School District is the fastest growing school district per capita in South Carolina. The district employs 2,124 people: 1,303 Teachers, 100 administrators, and 721 support staff. The district encompasses 50 square miles. In 2020, seniors at Fort Mill and Nation Ford high schools earned more than $23 million in scholarships, in total.

FAST FACTS Graduation rate is 82 percent.


Dr. Jonathan Phipps has 25 years experience in education, seven years as a superintendent. He is committed to “putting our children first.” Dr. Phipps has an undergraduate degree in history and education from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, a master’s degree in early childhood education from the University of South Carolina, and an educational specialist degree and doctorate in leadership in educational administration from Capella University.

2019-2020 school marked the first full year with STEAM programs. First in the state of South Carolina to have an interactive LU playground. Partners with businesses and industries to help students become college and career ready. Focus on teaching “soft skills,” such as leadership, problem-solving and work ethic, in order to be successful in school and beyond.

FAST FACTS 803-981-1000 Total enrollment: 17,500+ Number of schools: Pre-K: 1 Elementary Schools: 17 Middle Schools: 5 High Schools: 3 Career/Technology School: 1



Dr. John Jones, previously the district’s chief of Academics & Accountability, became interim superintendent in August 2021. The Chesterfield, S.C., native graduated from Wingate University, where he received a degree in early childhood education, before garnering advanced degrees at Nova Southeastern University and University of South Carolina. He’s served as a teacher and administrator in the Carolinas. Between 2009 and 2021, he was the director of middle school education at Union County Public Schools in North Carolina.


2020 graduation rate is 85.1 percent. Offers 10 school choice programs, including K-12 pathways for dual language immersion, STEAM, and International Baccalaureate. Transforming the teaching and learning environment through a partnership with Modern Teacher and the League of Innovative Schools. Applied Technology Center has the first high school level program supported by the Material Handling Institute of America in Warehousing and Distribution. The district employs 2,400 employees, including 1,340 teachers, 105 administrators, and 855 other support staff.


Rock Hill School District


ASK A MOM: School Edition WBTV’s Molly Grantham on special needs programs, extracurriculars, and more

Each month, anchor, author, and mom Molly Grantham tackles our readers’ parenting questions in a digital column for Below are questions submitted by parents of school-aged children. If you’d like to submit your own question, go to the “Ask A Mom” box on our homepage and leave a message for Molly. Then check back to see if she responds in next month’s column.



Q: Hi Molly! I am moving to the Charlotte area with a great deal of nerves because my husband landed a new job. However, I have a 7-yearold second grader with special needs. He currently is in a great private school for students with disabilities where he is excelling. Am I making a mistake? What are some challenges I many face?—Marie A: New experiences are what you make of them. If you go into something worried, you’ll see the worst parts first. But go into something open to the adventure, and adjustment comes faster. I believe the above advice— I mean, I wrote it—but also don’t know details about your child’s specific needs so there’s no way to say if “you’re making a mistake” or what “challenges you might face.” But, momma, you’re clearly his strongest advocate. You care and are involved. He’s already winning. As for Charlotte’s special needs programs, there are tons. We have some great schools, fantastic teachers, and really big-hearted people. Whatever wonderful situation your child is in now can never be exactly replicated, but at least you have experience with knowing a successful blueprint. To get you specific help, I took your question to Kimberly Dillard, an EC teacher and compliance facilitator within CharlotteMecklenburg Schools. “Our area has lots of options for students with disabilities when it comes to education,” she says. “Our public school system offers a vast range of support systems and services. There are parent information sessions and community partnerships. We invite you to talk with us, and with others, as you transition to the area.” If you’re looking for private


schools for special needs in North Carolina, there are plenty. According to, in the 2021 school year, there were 42 top special education private schools in the state, serving 1,823 students. A few in the Charlotte area that get good reviews are The Fletcher School, Manus Academy, The John Crosland School, and Phillips Academy. But don’t sleep on CMS, Kimberly says. The public school district in Mecklenburg County works hard to offer many programs to all types of kids. “The Charlotte-area also has lots of social opportunities for children with disabilities,” she adds. “Special Olympics is one. Best Buddies, a private organization, is another. We have joint partnerships with local professional sports teams, and lots of non-profits that aim to help local kids. Various countywide programs are also in place. Whatever interest your son might have, there is sure to be an activity of some sort already in place here.” Kimberly did say the downside to having such a vast network in Charlotte is that our area is well known and highly regarded for these programs, so they fill up fast. “We do serve many local children,” she says. “It is recommended that you are extremely proactive in registering and getting on waiting lists, well in advance. Call around as soon as you see you will be moving, so your spot is reserved.” Q: I signed my 5-year-old daughter up for soccer camp because big brother (8) has done it for three years and loved it. But when I drop her off, she cries and screams and they have to peel her off my leg. I made her go for the first


two days, then just gave up. Husband was furious about the wasted money and says we should teach her to followthrough on commitments. I don’t want to force her to do something she doesn’t want to do. How should we handle this one?—Holly A: Every child is different, but the lesson about commitments and follow-through is also real. I hear you on both accounts. My gut instinct is to not make a child with legitimately zero interest in a sport or activity— to the point of screaming, crying, and peeling her off your leg—go to that sport or activity. If she hates it that much, forcing her won’t help her, the camp counselors, or your soul. If my husband insisted on her attendance despite tantrums, I’d make him drop her off. (That would solve the problem quickly.) Maybe, as a compromise, you could try calling soccer camp organizers and ask if the remaining three days could credit towards your son’s next visit? If the days you don’t use with your daughter could be put toward his future registration, it might not feel as wasteful. Explain the situation. You don’t need a refund—you know you signed her up with the intention of going all week—but let them know it’s just not working. It’s worth a shot. Surely your daughter is not the first young “player” with her own strong opinion about the camp. Q: Hi Molly. My 6-year-old daughter is asking for a sports bra. SIX! Not because she needs it yet, but she thinks they’re cute on girls when they work out or play volleyball on the Olympics. I saw that Target carries them for little girls. Is she too young for this, or am

I sending the wrong message if I buy her one?—Tonya A: Learning to parent fashion is the worst. My 10-year-old has been wanting to show her midriff for years. I sound like a nun when I say repeatedly, “You can’t show your belly button. Please don’t show your belly button. No, we’re not buying that because I don’t want you to show your belly button.” Call me old-fashioned or unfair—she does—and I’ll agree. But, I just don’t want her showing her stomach. Blame my proper, classically Southern dad. He’s shining through, one generation later. You’re right though: Our girls see women showing off their bodies. We cheer on Olympic athletes who look half-naked. Disney sitcoms have teen girls in crop tops. Stores everywhere sell racks of stomach-bearing children’s clothes, mini-mini skirts, and sweatshirts half the length of traditional ones. Though not all of it is acceptable for school or walking around a mall, some is absolutely acceptable in certain contexts. Take the dance world. Have you ever seen a dance convention? Or gone to a typical dance class rehearsal? My daughter was involved in a well-respected Charlotte dance group for a few years. At her first weekend competition, I looked at the other girls in booty shorts and sports bras, and realized Parker’s tank top and long leggings made her look like we were on a winter hike. Dancers say the tighter clothes are comfortable for intense movement and once I got past the fact I was watching talented girls in glorified bikinis, I did start to appreciate the style and creativity of their dance attire. Point being: The more you’re around something, the more it

seems acceptable. I never gave it a green light, but if Parker was still dancing now—she’s not, but if she was—I can see how I might have come around to her wearing skimpier things. So, is your daughter too young? No one knows that answer but you. If you don’t want to let her try a sports bra, don’t. If you don’t mind her trying one, she won’t be alone. Stores stock them because parents buy them. But remember, she is six. That is still young enough you can parent her outfits firmly. Q: My 12-year-old daughter has put on weight in the last year. I don’t know how much exactly, but it’s noticeable enough that my mother-inlaw mentioned it to me. It’s probably from too much snacking during homeschool and 9 months without soccer practice. I know she needs to eat less and move more, but I’m scared to bring it up to her and make her feel insecure or develop and eating disorder. Any advice?—Alex A: My instinct is to never bring up weight gain with your child—especially a 12-year-old girl. She knows. She sees social media, billboards, magazines, TV, books, shows… she… and her friends… all kids… all ages… see what we see. A woman’s weight and body are images too pervasive to avoid and if you, her biggest protector and fan, bring up “gaining weight,” I fear she’d never forget the conversation. Plus, our girls are a remarkable, special, magical breed living in a world that we as moms don’t fully understand. We didn’t grow up with cell phones. We didn’t have IG, Tik Tok, cyber bullying, and endless pressure to be available and always “on.” Our

children are maturing faster than we did. I find it sad and scary. We can’t stop the pace— toothpaste doesn’t go back in the tube—but I feel like the least we can do is assure our girls they are absolutely perfect exactly how they are. Now, are you concerned about your daughter’s actual health? Blood pressure, activity level, eating habits from the past year? If that’s the case, you’re not alone. There are lots of conversations right now about the long-term impact of COVID on kids’ physical and mental health, grades, sports, and friendships. I find it helpful when I’m ready to throw up my hands over one of those categories to remember that the past 12 months were about nothing but survival. None of us—or our kids—will get blue ribbons. There is no judgment and definitely no winners. Just survivors. Participation medals for all. But what do I know? I’m just a mom. Child Psychologist Michele Mannering, Ph.D., who has an office in Cotswold, has more professional advice. “The pediatrician can help you understand your child’s BMI (body mass index), and whether there are indications for preobesity or obesity,” she says. “They can also see if your child has been relatively consistent over time on their growth curve, or if there is sudden change.” Dr. Mannering says the impact of the pandemic is real and has affected everyone, especially our kids. “They’ve been out of their routines,” she says. “They’ve had more opportunities for snacking and less physical activity. If you choose to address it, think about how to change habits for the whole family, not just one child. And be sensitive and aware that weight gain/loss can be linked

with anxiety and depression. Both have increased the past year. So, also notice if there are changes in their behavior. A pediatrician can help screen for emotional concerns as well.” Finally, she said, be mindful not to create negative associations with food. “It’s pivotal not to label anything as ‘bad’ or ‘restrictive,’” she says. “Moderation is a healthier approach than total elimination. Don’t throw away all the cookies or forbid ice cream.’” Not that Dr. Mannering thought I’d relay this part, but she told me she replied to my email by dictating into her phone as she sat in carpool line after scrambling out of work to get another kid to a gym class. She’s doing the hard work, living the juggle, and advising from a real place. Love that. Q: I have three boys, ages 10, 8, and 4. They CONSTANTLY have their hands down their pants when they walk around the house. A lot of times my youngest does it in public. My husband just laughs and says I need to get over it, but as the lone female in my house I find it disgusting. Help! —Hannah A: I read this question and laughed because, candidly, I’ve wondered the same thing. I have two sons, one being only 11 months old. Even at that young baby age, every other time I change his diaper, he grabs below. I have said out loud to no one around it’s as if he wants to reassure himself it’s still attached. Dr. Hassan, a local (female) pediatrician, had instant advice. “For me, this comes down to manners and culture,” she says. “It’s not a medical question, in my view. You could argue that it’s a normal developmental phase to explore all parts of your

body as a young child, but past early preschool I find this behavior socially unacceptable. It’s akin to a finger in the nose or burping/farting loudly in public. Those things may be okay in some families, but not most.” She believes it’s a parenting decision on manners. “A united front from both parents usually works,” she says. “If the parents don’t agree with what’s socially acceptable, it’s probably not going to be reinforced to the kids. But constant redirection is what’s necessary and appropriate. ‘That’s not nice manners,’ or ‘Go to the bathroom if you need to touch your privates, please.’ So… keep up the good fight, momma! I hope you can win hubby over to your side. It is one of my pet peeves: Adult men rearranging their genitals in public. Please, just stop them when they’re younger.” Read Molly’s monthly column on


Moderation is a healthier approach than total elimination. Don’t throw away all the cookies or forbid ice cream.”



all about

AGRITOURISM Teach your family about where their food comes from with a visit to a Carolina farm






ver ask your family where the food on the dinner table comes from? If they answer, “the grocery store,” it might be time to teach your children about the origin of foods, the processes to make it, and how those items got to the grocery store. “This can be as simple as picking one thing like milk or honey or a favorite fruit or vegetable,” says Sandra Coffman from Split Creek Goat Farm in Anderson, South Carolina, “and then visiting a farm to gain a better understanding of what it takes to ‘make’ those products.” Agritourism—or the act of visiting a working farm or any agricultural business to get educated or involved— shows your children where food comes from and supports the local farmers too. Here are some farms in the Carolinas to plan your next family trip:



EMERALD FARMS, GREENWOOD, SC Visit this working dairy farm Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Pet baby goats, wander with peacocks, walk through the herb garden, and learn about honeybees. Purchase handmade goat milk products at the onsite health food store. HICKORY HILL MILK, EDGEFIELD, SC

HUNTER FARM, WEDDINGTON, NC Choose the best strawberries from the expansive fields, or rent a space in the community gardens to learn more about farming and growing food.



MILLSTONE CREEK ORCHARDS, RAMSEUR, NC Head to Millstone Creek Orchards to pick your own apples, blackberries, blueberries, grapes, peaches, and more. The farm stand carries items from the farm as well as other local growers.


Take a two-hour behind-the-scenes tour to learn how milk is made at this fourthgeneration dairy farm. Schedule a tour (minimum of 10 people) through Jamie Pearson, (803) 480-3312.

OLD MCCASKILL’S FARM, REMBERT, SC This is not an interactive farm, but guests are encouraged to look at the sheep and other farm animals and watch the daily chores being completed. The farm store carries meats, cheese, wool yarn, wool blankets from the farm, and other products like goat cheese and honey from area farms. Plan a private tour, stay at the on-site bed and breakfast, or sign up for a canning class.


SPLIT CREEK GOAT FARM, ANDERSON, SC Take a self-guided tour on Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Get a peek at the kids (baby goats) born in the spring. Check out the goats, chickens, pigs, and rabbits, and visit the farm store for goat cheese, lotions, and lip balms made from goat milk. Take a virtual tour through Goats 4 Goodness, the farm’s nonprofit organization. WISE ACRE ORGANIC FARMS, INDIAN TRAIL, NC Pick strawberries beginning in April and choose a pumpkin in the fall. Visit with the

goats, pigs, chickens, and rabbits and play on the playground. Refuel with a locally-sourced Wise Pie Wood Fired Oven Pizza.


Follow directions from staff about which animals may be fed or pet.


Read signs with rules or guidelines.



Avoid “no entry” areas because they could be dangerous.


Be a courteous responsible guest while on the working farm: Throw away trash in proper receptacles or take it out. Keep noise to a minimum and only climb and swing on labeled playgrounds.

Contact each farm ahead of time to ask about most up-to-date operating hours, procedures, and COVID guidelines. KNOW BEFORE YOU GO Beverly I. Mooney, owner Millstone Creek Orchards in Ramseur, North Carolina shares these tips before heading out to a working farm or orchard: 1.

Visit the website and social media sites to confirm hours, event, prices, reservations needed, food, etc. Some farms may only accept cash.


Check the weather prior to your visit.


Wear the right clothes and shoes. Farms can be dusty and muddy.


Bring water, bug spray, sunscreen, and supplies for a picnic, if allowed.


Allow enough travel time to check-in for a reservation.

10. Find out if it’s OK to bring the family dog before doing so. It may be disruptive to the farm animals on the farm. RESOURCES FOR A DEEPER DIVE •

Download the Visit NC Farms app to find farms and farmers markets.

Learn more about agritourism through the NC State Extension.

Collect stamps from each farm you visit through the SC Agritourism Passport Program.

VANESSA INFANZON is a Charlotte-based writer and mom. Follow her on Instagram and Facebook @morethanVMI. EDUCATION GUIDE 2021-22 // CHARLOT TE PARENT




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We educate students 2 years old-12th grade.

Why Does My Kid Struggle With Handwriting? Tips to help your child develop this skill BY CINDY UTZINGER, OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST


he importance of good handwriting can be easy to overlook in the digital age. Writing by hand, however, is an important skill for our children because it engages the brain in a different way than typing on a keyboard or touching a screen does. Studies show that writing improves memory and helps students retain information and new ideas better than typing can. Handwriting can be a source of frustration for many kids, but with a few fun and easy strategies, we can help them develop this skill.

children use to hold objects between the pad and tips of their index finger and their thumb). They can do the following activities using their thumb and pointer finger: • Cut a sponge into small pieces, place in water, and have your child squeeze water out of the sponge into a cup. • Use an eye-dropper to suck up water mixed with food coloring to learn what happens when you mix colors. • Make a ball out of a small amount of Play-Doh and squeeze it in between the thumb and pointer finger.

a wall painted with chalkboard paint, or tape their paper to the wall. Next, progress to a slanted surface by placing their paper on a three-ringed binder that has been turned so the spine of the binder faces away from your child. Finally, have them write with the paper flat on their work surface.

Stars and dice. To play stars and dice, I have the child roll a die. The number they roll becomes the number of times they must write a letter well enough to earn a star.


Drop it. Pinch it. Flip it. The first step to good handwriting is a proper pencil grip. To demonstrate this, I teach kids to “Drop it. Pinch it. Flip it.” I have children drop their pencil on the table in front of them with the point facing toward them and the eraser pointing away. Next, I tell them to pinch it with their thumb and pointer finger toward the bottom of the pencil. Finally, they use their other hand to grab the eraser and flip it (or tip it back) so the opposite end of the pencil rests in the fleshy area of their hand between their thumb and pointer finger. If your child struggles to hold their pencil properly, they can do fine motor activities to promote a strong pincer grasp (the grasp

Multi-sensory learning.


Use a multi-sensory approach to help your child learn letter formation. Examples of this include writing letters in shaving cream, on the sidewalk with sidewalk chalk, or with finger or bathtub paints. They can also form letters out of Play-Doh or trace letters with their pointer finger on sandpaper.

Vertical writing.

Spacing is an important part of legibility. I like to use the “spaghetti and meatballs” approach to teach this. I use a dry spaghetti noodle or piece of yellow yarn to show the proper amount of space to use between letters in a word. I use a small brown thumbnail-sized pom-pom as my meatball. The meatball should be able to fit between words in a sentence.

The developmental sequence for learning handwriting as opposed to arm writing is to start on a vertical surface, progress to a slanted surface, and finally a horizontal surface. Have your child begin writing or drawing on an easel,

CINDY UTZINGER is an occupational therapist, mother of two, and author of Why Is My Kid Doing That?, a book to help parents better understand their child’s behavior



Self-Advocacy in the Age of COVID How to teach your children to advocate for themselves in a socially distanced world BY RANDI MAZZELLA

WHAT IS SELF-ADVOCATING? Self-advocating is speaking up for yourself in a polite and clear manner. Dr. Tara Egan, a clinical psychologist, explains, “It’s important


to stay calm. It is easier for people to hear you when you’re NOT yelling, as they can focus on your words, not your tone. And be sure to pick a good time to advocate that is convenient for the recipient of the request.” As parents, we need to teach our children the difference between advocating and complaining. Make it clear that they may not get what they request, even when they advocate correctly. “I tell kids that sometimes you have to ‘accept the no’ and focus on coping with disappointment and frustration over not getting what you want,” Egan says. WHY CHILDREN NEED TO SELF-ADVOCATE Many parents may speak on their child’s behalf because they assume an adult would rather converse with an adult, or their child is too young to self-advocate. Sometimes parents even step in without even notifying their child. “This happens all the time,


especially when it comes to the parentteacher relationship,” Egan says. “The result is that parents miss out on a good opportunity to role model.” While it may take practice, it’s worth the effort to teach self-advocacy skills at home. Most educators prefer students to approach them directly with an issue because it demonstrates maturity and ownership. With practice, children will get better at solving their own problems, which will make them more confident adults. THE CHALLENGE OF REMOTE LEARNING AND SOCIAL DISTANCING With in-person learning, children can stay after class or practice to speak to the adult in charge if they need assistance. Educators can also read a child’s social cues and sense if they are having difficulties. But remote learning or social distancing and masking has created challenges. Teachers may


Self-advocacy is an essential life skill that parents can teach their children from a young age. But the pandemic made this difficult for children who communicate with their teachers and classmates largely through a screen or a socially distant classroom. According to Dr. Michele Borba, an educational psychologist and author of the soon-to-be released, Thrivers: The Surprising Reasons Why Some Kids Struggle While Others Shine, this period has made it harder, especially for introverted kids, to speak up to teachers, coaches, and authority figures. Here are some ways to help your child advocate for themselves in the age of COVID.

get virtual one-on-one educational support from the Library. Charlotte Mecklenburg Library has everything students need to succeed in school, from early childhood to the next steps after high school such as a career or college. Learn more about the Library’s education resources today.

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HOW PARENTS CAN HELP Parents can model a proper written request with an appropriate greeting, a clearly stated concern, and a thank you. Brainstorm what to write together. “Kids can be taught to write basic emails to teachers as young as 2nd or 3rd grade,” Egan says, “but it needs to be coached, starting with, ‘Let’s think about what questions we need to ask Mr. Smith.’” Keep in mind these may be new skills for your child. “Constructing a polite email with the right tone can be stressful for kids, especially since they are not used to communicating through quick texts, not formal emails,” Borba says. “They may get overwhelmed by simple things like what to write in the subject line.” Before any in-person or online meeting, role play with your child so they get comfortable expressing themselves. If you feel you need to stay in the room for a younger child, be supportive but let the child take the lead.


KIDS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS Family counselor Robin Halpern explains that navigating the constant changes in learning (remote, hybrid, later start times) can create anxiety for all students, but especially those with learning issues. Students who may normally get accommodations (like in-class support) may not receive these services. In these cases, parents may need to speak with their child’s counselor about adjustments to their curriculum. But students with special needs can still advocate for themselves. Halpern suggests creating boundaries and schedules to mimic the routine of a normal school environment. “If it’s school time and Mom would normally be at work, ask the teacher (online) for help instead of going to Mom just because she is in the next room,” she says. Understand that students may be more stressed and anxious than usual. “Validate their feelings,” Halpern says. “Give them extra support without taking over. As much as possible, you want the student to feel in control of the situation.”


PRAISE THE EFFORT In an ideal scenario, the adult will be responsive when your child speaks up for themselves. But if not, let your child know that they can ask a parent to get involved. “Some adults that deal with children aren’t appropriately trained in how to say ‘no’ to a request without squashing a child’s advocacy skills,” Egan says. “Kids can definitely get mixed messages about ‘You should always tell the teacher’ but then get dismissed for being whiny or tattling.” Reinforce their self-advocacy accomplishments. “Parents can say, ‘See, buddy? You sent a really kind email to your teacher and waited patiently for her to respond, and she wrote back and said yes, you can partner with Caleb on your project!’,” Egan says. And even if they don’t get the outcome they want, remind them they haven’t failed. Speaking up is hard. Let your child know you are proud of them for advocating for themselves.

RANDI MAZZELLA is a freelance writer specializing in parenting, teen issues, mental health, and wellness. She is a wife and mother of three children. To read more of her work, visit


have missed subtle clues that the student is struggling. Students may be reluctant to seek help, too. They may not want to speak in front of their peers or feel uncomfortable reaching out to a teacher after hours.



Each year, Charlotte Parent asks readers to nominate Charlotte teachers who make a difference. Meet the four finalists who continue to inspire students and earn respect and admiration in their communities.




fluency and comprehension. They needed to see my mouth move and take shape to make the sounds on their own. It was apparent early on that a clear face shield was going to be the key while teaching Letterland. What’s been the best part about returning to the classroom? The social interaction is the best part about returning to the classroom. It is heartwarming to hear those deep down in the belly giggles and to be on the other end of a “smooshy” hug. What’s been your proudest moment as an educator? When a friend has that ‘a-ha’ moment. The astonished look is usually recognizable to me as a sudden understanding crosses their face. Sharing a moment like this is the most gratifying feeling. SHANNON DUCKWORTH School: St. Mark Catholic Preschool Grade Level: Preschool Fours Relationship Status: Married with two amazing children Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana Currently Lives: Concord, North Carolina Currently Reading: The President is Missing by Bill Clinton and James Patterson Why did you become a teacher? I originally began volunteering in preschool as an avenue to be involved in my own children’s lives. Over the early years with my kids, my love for teaching evolved. Although I love to enlighten children’s minds and curiosity, I believe I have just as much to learn from them due to their natural wonder and fascination about the world. What’s been the hardest part about teaching through the pandemic? Teaching phonics through a mask was a hurdle that preschool teachers had to overcome. Learning sounds of letters is the foundation of every student’s reading



What’s your favorite thing to do outside of the classroom? If I am not spending time with my own family, I enjoy yoga. What’s the best teaching advice you ever got? It was from my colleague and mentor. Her advice was, “do you!” I interpreted that as have fun! I believe we can practice Letterland phonics and learn to read while doing frog jumps. I believe we can gain math skills with M&Ms and slime games. I believe we can understand science blasting off rocket ships. I believe we can learn life’s lessons through laughter. When all is said and done, I want our friends to graduate with a love of learning and the confidence to shine bright in kindergarten.

THE TOUGH STUFF Chocolate or cheese? Cheese Coffee or tea? Coffee Hot dog or taco? Taco Reality or fiction? Fiction Comedy or drama? Comedy Dog or cat? Dog More sleep or more free time? More sleep Facebook or Instagram? Instagram

show my students that they are not just a number or a test score in my classroom—they are an important person to our world and classroom. What’s been the hardest part about teaching through the pandemic? The constant changes that happen in the classroom. Myself and my students thrive off of consistency, and because things would change every hour or minute of the day, that was hard to assess what my students learned. What’s been the best part about returning to the classroom? Having a consistent environment and seeing my students all the time! I love being able to see in real time what they know and how we are affecting their learning in the classroom.

RODE NORMAN School: Movement School Eastland Charter School Grade Level/Subject: 1st Grade Family Status: Married with two children, Timoteo, 16 months, and Jiselle, 1 month Hometown: Charlotte, North Carolina Currently Lives: Mount Holly, North Carolina Currently Reading: Teacher Curriculum! Why did you become a teacher? I became a teacher because I was the Spanish-speaking child in the back of the classroom that didn’t know what was going on. Some teachers ignored me while others pushed me to learn my utmost potential. I wanted to be the latter and

What’s been your proudest moment as an educator? My proudest moment as an educator has been seeing students succeed in their glory and potential. I noticed it the most when I was teaching my last 4th grade math class and when all my students were able to discuss a math topic with passion and engagement, it made all the hard work worth it.

THE TOUGH STUFF: Chocolate or cheese? Chocolate Coffee or tea? Coffee Hot dog or taco? Taco Reality or fiction? Fiction Comedy or drama? Drama Dog or cat? Dog More sleep or more free time? More free time Facebook or Instagram? Instagram

What’s been your biggest teaching fail to date? My biggest fail to date is spilling all of my copies for homework across the hallway and they were all out of order when I spent time putting them together by date, month, and subject. What’s your favorite thing to do outside of the classroom? My favorite thing is spending time with my husband and babies. What’s the best teaching advice you ever got? The best teaching advice I ever got was if you love it, it will show in your teaching, and that is something I find true to this day. EDUCATION GUIDE 2021-22 // CHARLOT TE PARENT


TEACHERS OF THE YEAR 4th grade and loved it. Six years ago I took the leap to 6th grade math and it’s the perfect fit! My teaching goal is to make my students feel confident in math since so many students do not (unfortunately). What’s been the hardest part about teaching through the pandemic? Not being face to face! Not being able to make a more personal connection! Not being able to sit one on one with a struggling student! What’s been the best part about returning to the classroom? Just being with my students and interacting in person. What’s been your proudest moment as an educator? Having students say, “I never felt good about math before, but now I’m confident.” CAROL JACKSON School: Jay M. Robinson Middle School Grade Level: 6th grade math Relationship Status: Married Hometown: Portsmouth, Virginia Currently Lives: Matthews, North Carolina Currently Reading: The Silent Patient Why did you become a teacher? Oh gosh—I don’t have a really cool story about this like some teachers do. I was a business major in college and just didn’t love it. A friend of mine suggested that I take some education classes, and it was a good fit. When I first started teaching, I taught kindergarten and first grade—it was NOT a good fit, so I thought maybe I was in the wrong occupation. After taking some time away, I ended up in



What’s been your biggest teaching fail to date? Focusing on what went wrong instead of celebrating the wins! What’s your favorite thing to do outside of the classroom? Spend time with my family—going to the mountains to hike and relax. What’s the best teaching advice you ever got? Focus on every positive and celebrate them!

THE TOUGH STUFF: Chocolate or cheese? Hard one – I love both! But I’ll take Chocolate Coffee or tea? Coffee Hot dog or taco? Taco Reality or fiction? Reality Comedy or drama? Drama Dog or cat? Dog More sleep or more free time? Sleep Facebook or Instagram? Instagram

domino effect; if I can influence even one student for the better, eventually my impact will move far beyond my relatively small circle.

APRILLE’ MORRIS-BUTLER School: Julius L. Chambers High School Grade level/subject: 10th—12th grade biology Family status: Single mother to son Matthew Hometown: Detroit, Michigan Currently lives: Charlotte, North Carolina Currently Reading: While We Were Dating by Jasmine Guillory Why did you become a teacher? I became a teacher in order to influence change in the education system. Too many Black and Brown students are left behind by a system that undervalues and underappreciates them and ignores them when they try to advocate for themselves. I wanted to be a teacher that not only dismantles the systems that enable this treatment to continue, but also who helps my students learn to do the same for themselves and others. I often say that I want to create a

What’s been the hardest part about teaching through the pandemic? The hardest part about teaching through the pandemic was learning how to separate my work from home because, well…we were working from home. As a teacher, it is already difficult not to work from home. A lot of us take grading home, search for materials at home, differentiate lesson plans, email parents and other teachers, and more. During the initial stages of the pandemic I often found myself working far beyond my 8-hour days simply because time passed so quickly. It was mentally exhausting and I burnt myself out very quickly. What’s been the best part about returning to the classroom? Experiencing my kids’ joy at learning new concepts and material. As a science teacher, the ability to provide my students with hands-on experiences is one of my favorite things to do. Science concepts can be very abstract when you read about them in PowerPoints or learning formulas. Being able to watch my students create endo- and exothermic reactions by creating hot and cold packs or learn about kinetic and potential energy using coins and string was the highlight of returning. What’s been your proudest moment as an educator? Once a week, I show my students college and career options both local and national. I include multiple types of schools and careers and give the pros, cons, and application process for each school or career. As a graduate of an HBCU I do like to share them with my students as options for them to consider as part of their post-high school plans. I received an email last year from a past student telling me that not only had I

inspired them to apply to college in the first place, but that they’d specifically applied (and gotten in!) to an HBCU because of me. I definitely consider this my proudest moment. What’s been your biggest teaching fail to date? One morning, caught up in the lesson I was teaching and enjoying the student response, I was walking around the classroom while I explained a concept. When I cycled back to the front of the classroom, I forgot that I’d had to plug my laptop into the HDMI cord connected to the SmartBoard. When I reached my desk area, I didn’t lift my leg to clear the HDMI cord, tripped and hit the floor hard. I laid there for a bit, but luckily, instead of laughing, my kids jumped up to help me. Definitely a fail, but a funny one! What’s your favorite thing to do outside of the classroom? I love to spend time with my son. We travel frequently during non-COVID times. I also enjoy DIY projects. I’ve reupholstered chairs, painted chairs and a wagon, and also potted several plants recently. My ultimate relaxation tool, however, is reading. I can read a book a day—last year I read over 100 books! What’s the best teaching advice you ever got? Build relationships with my students. Every new teacher is told this over and over again, but you don’t really understand how important it is until you begin to do it. When you’ve built relationships with your students, they trust you and will perform at a much higher level because they know that you care about them not just as students in your class but as individuals. It’s been one of the most rewarding parts of being a teacher; watching my students blossom as they learn that they are safe and cared for in my classroom.



THE TOUGH STUFF: Chocolate or cheese? I’m lactose intolerant, so no cheese for me! Coffee or tea? Coffee—Starbucks is my single largest guilty pleasure Hot dog or taco? Taco Tuesday should be everyday in my humble opinion Reality or fiction? Fiction. Reality has been a lot this year, so a good book or TV show has been a great escape


the Charlotte Christian Community Christ-centered. College preparatory. Educating the whole child.

Comedy or drama? A good drama will make you laugh, cry, and everything in between. Dog or cat? Dog. There’s something about an animal that’s always indescribably happy to see you come home More sleep or more free time? Free time. With my increased free time, I can not only grab more sleep, but have more time for DIY projects and reading Facebook or Instagram? Instagram






UPDATED BY CHARLOTTE PARENT STAFF Charlotte and its nearby towns are abundant with independent school options. From top-notch technology and robust extracurricular programs to unique education models and teaching styles, each institution brings its own strengths. Following is a snapshot of area independent private schools. For more information, visit the school’s website for information about scheduling a tour. Many school applications are due in January. * Tuition is annual unless otherwise noted


MECKLENBURG COUNTY ALC Mosaic 6100 Monroe Road, Charlotte | 704-709-9668 Grades: K-12 and half-day Pre-K Enrollment: 70 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9-1 Tuition: $1,200 - $11,900 ALC Mosaic provides an environment for liberation where personal growth flourishes when directed by an individual’s own interests and talents.

Anami Montessori School 2901 Archdale Drive, Charlotte 704-556-0042 Grades: PK-grade 6 Enrollment: 70 Student-Teacher Ratio: 12-1 Tuition: $9,591-$13,361 Anami Montessori School adheres to Montessori principles of Dr. Maria Montessori. Located in the SouthPark area, the school backs up to a county park and sits on a natural, wooded lot.

Back Creek Christian Academy 10132 Harrisburg Road, Charlotte | 704-549-4101 Grades: TK-12 Enrollment: 135 Student-Teacher Ratio: 12-1 Tuition: $6,500-$8,750 Back Creek Christian Academy provides an excellent academic education founded on the unchanging principles and perspectives of the Bible presented in a structured and yet nurturing environment.

Brisbane Academy 5901 Statesville Road, Charlotte 704-598-5208 Grades: PK-8 Enrollment: 68 Tuition: $5,500-$9,750 Brisbane Academy offers a small, family-oriented environment to develop a love for self and the overall learning process. Each student is individually coached and challenged through instructional methods of teaching appropriate for their learning style.



The British International School of Charlotte 7000 Endhaven Lane, Charlotte | 704-341-3236 Grades: Infant-Grade 12 Enrollment: 180-200 Student-Teacher Ratio: 12-1 Tuition: $11,960-$27,750 Part of Nord Anglia Education: 61 premium international schools across the globe. BISC encourages independent, creative thinking, and smaller class sizes for a personalized learning experience. Cannon School 5801 Poplar Tent Road, Concord | 704-786-8171 Grades: JK-12 Enrollment: 1,040 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9:1 Tuition: $18,330-$25,080 A learning environment of trust and support, with faculty and staff who are deeply committed to each child’s journey of academic and personal growth. Financial aid available. Carmel Christian School 1145 Pineville-Matthews Road, Matthews | 704-849-9723 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 1,100 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9-1 Religious Affiliation: Southern Baptist Tuition: $9,950-$14,600 Founded in 1993, Carmel Christian provides an excellent education built upon biblical truth to equip students to reflect Christ to the world. CCS cultivates a community of academic excellence, artistic expression and athletic distinction, marked by intentional discipleship. Carolina Collaborative Prep 5007 Providence Road, Charlotte 704-621-8482 Grades: 3-12 Student-Teacher Ratio: 3:1 Tuition: $20,500-$25,000 Designed for students with learning differences. Small class size, individualized curriculum, Orton Gillingham programs, daily fitness and electives including science lab, computer and photography offered. Fulland part-time options available.


Cedarwood Academy 401 E. Arrowood Road, Charlotte 704-281-6694 Grades: PK-7 Enrollment: 40 Student-Teacher Ratio: 4/10-1 Tuition: $2,600-$9,500 A learning community committed to nurturing curiosity and inspiring a passion for knowledge. The school pursues intellectual growth, develops imagination and practices purposeful social interaction in a natural and engaging environment. Charlotte Catholic High School 7702 Pineville Matthews Road, Charlotte | 704-543-1127 Grades: 9-12 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions Tuition: $12,087-$17,288 School features a 100% graduation rate, one-to-one technology, AP and honors courses, college counseling, award-winning fine arts and championship winning athletics. Transportation offered. Charlotte Christian School 7301 Sardis Road, Charlotte 704-366-5657 Grades: JK-12 Enrollment: 1,113 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9-1 Religious Affiliation: Nondenominational Tuition: $16,500-$22,255 Charlotte Christian is an independent, nondenominational college-prep school with a biblical worldview. The school is committed to excellence and to providing a balance of rigorous academics, award-winning fine arts and competitive athletics to prepare students college.


Charlotte Country Day School 1440 Carmel Road, Charlotte 704-943-4500 Grades: JK-12 Enrollment: 1,725 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8-1 Tuition: $19,305–$26,865 From junior kindergarten to rigorous Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) courses, the school’s exceptional faculty incorporates the newest technologies to teach an innovative and integrated curriculum. Transportation offered. Charlotte Jewish Day School 5007 Providence Road, Building E., Charlotte | 704-366-4558 Grades: K-5 Enrollment: 94 Student-Teacher Ratio: 12-1 Religious Affiliation: Jewish Tuition: $13,250-$16,658 Sets the standard for elementary education based on Jewish beliefs. Through differentiated education curriculum, the school teaches critical thinking, problem solving and collaboration. Transportation offered. Charlotte Latin School 9502 Providence Road, Charlotte | 704-846-1100 Grades: TK-12 Enrollment: 1,500+ Student-Teacher Ratio: 9-1 Tuition: $20,350-$28,150 Charlotte Latin School’s mission is to encourage individual development and civility in students by inspiring them to learn, encouraging them to serve others and offering them many growth-promoting opportunities. Transportation offered. Charlotte Preparatory School 212 Boyce Road, Charlotte | 704-366-5994 Grades: Age 2-Grade 8 Enrollment: 365 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8:1 Tuition: $13,700-$22,300 Focus on academic excellence, positive character development and leadership in a diverse and inclusive community. Transportation and financial aid offered.

Chesterbrook Academy 8515 Mallard Creek Road, Charlotte 877-959-4181 Grades: 6 weeks-Pre-K2 Chesterbrook Academy Preschool on Mallard Creek Road has served the families of Charlotte since 1997. Our Links to Learning curriculum prepares children for elementary school and beyond by developing important academic, social and emotional skills. Chesterbrook Academy 13740 Statesville Road, Huntersville NC 877-959-4181 Grades: 6 weeks-Pre-K2 Chesterbrook Academy Preschool on Statesville Road has served the families of Huntersville since 1999. Our Links to Learning curriculum prepares children for elementary school and beyond by developing important academic, social and emotional skills. Chesterbrook Academy 143 Professional Park Dr., Mooresville 877-959-4181 Grades: 6 weeks-Pre-K2 Chesterbrook Academy Preschool has served the families of Mooresville since 2001 Our Links to Learning curriculum prepares children for elementary schoo and beyond by developing important academic, social and emotional skills. Chesterbrook Academy 11922 Providence Road West, Charlotte Old Lancaster Towne Center 877-959-4181 Grades: 6 weeks-Pre-K2 Chesterbrook Academy Preschool on Providence Road West has served the families of Charlotte since 2007. Our Links to Learning curriculum prepares children for elementary school and beyond by developing important academic, social and emotional skills.

Chesterbrook Academy 8411 Beverly Crest Blvd., Charlotte 877-959-4181 Grades: 6 weeks-Pre-K2 Chesterbrook Academy Preschool on Beverly Crest Boulevard has served the families of Charlotte since 2007. Our Links to Learning curriculum prepares children for elementary school and beyond by developing important academic, social and emotional skills. Chesterbrook Academy 7274 NC Hwy 73, Denver 877-959-4181 Grades: 6 weeks-Pre-K2 Chesterbrook Academy Preschool has served the families of Denver since 2008. Our Links to Learning curriculum prepares children for elementary school and beyond by developing important academic, social and emotional skills. Chesterbrook Academy 509 Weddington Road, Weddington 877-959-4181 Grades: 6 weeks-Pre-K2 Chesterbrook Academy Preschool has served the families of Weddington since 2009. Our Links to Learning curriculum prepares children for elementary school and beyond by developing important academic, social and emotional skills. Christ the King Catholic High School 2011 Crusader Way, Huntersville | 704-766-5000 Grades: 9-12 Enrollment: 363 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8:1 Tuition: $12,087-$17,288 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions School features a 100% graduation rate, one-to-one technology, AP and honors courses, college counseling, band, theater and athletics. Transportation offered.

Covenant Day School 800 Fullwood Lane, Matthews | 704-847-2385 Grades: TK-12 Enrollment: 945 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9:1-13:1 Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition: $10,850-$18,355 Covenant Day School is a Christcentered, college-preparatory school that was founded in 1989. The school seeks to ignite a passion for learning and service in students by providing an authentic and holistic Christian education of distinction.

Fusion Academy Charlotte 3540 Toringdon Way, Suite 100, Charlotte 866-228-1591 Grades: 6-12 Enrollment: 10-60 Student-Teacher Ratio: 1-1 Tuition: $3,315-$3,705 per course, per term Classes are one-to-one with one student and one teacher per classroom. Teachers personalize instruction for each student’s unique strengths, interests and learning style.

Crossway Academy 9111 Monroe Road, Suite 100, Charlotte 704-654-2352 Grades: K-8 Enrollment: 40 Student-Teacher Ratio: 5-1 Tuition: $17,200-$18,200 Meets the academic and social needs of children who are experiencing difficulty in the traditional, special education or home-school setting.

Grace Covenant Academy 17301 Statesville Road, Cornelius 704-892-5601 Grades: PK-7 Enrollment: 174 Student-Teacher Ratio: Threes: 7-1; Fours: 9-1; K-2nd Grade: 12-1; 3rd5th Grade: 12-1; and 6th-8th Grade: cap at 24 students Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition: $7,750 Grace Covenant Academy educates the whole child through strong academics and intentional spiritual formation. Offers cutting edge technology, a STEM lab, new facilities and strong partnership with families.

Davidson Day School 750 Jetton St., Davidson | 704-237-5229 Grades: Age 2-Grade 12 Enrollment: 500 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8-1 Tuition: $11,760-$21,090 Fosters academic excellence through collaboration, creativity and character development. Students benefit from an engaging, rigorous and developmentally appropriate curriculum with exceptional artistic, athletic and extracurricular programs. Davidson Green School 511 S. Main St., Davidson 704-817-2549 Grades: Age 3-8 Enrollment: 45 Student-Teacher Ratio: 10-1 Tuition: $8,190-$13,206 An independent school with a focus on sustainability, nature connection and engineering.

Greyfriars Classical Academy 2701 Rice Road, Matthews 704-315-5774 Grades: 9-12 Enrollment: 51 Student-Teacher Ratio: 11-1 for high school Tuition: $4,200 High school students meet three days per week, with students working independently two days each week. Grades K-8 is a oneday-per-week tutorial program for home-school students, with optional second day for grades 6-8. Grades 9-12: Grades K-8:

Guidepost Montessori 4755 Prosperity Church Road, Charlotte Second location: 15115 Norman View Lane, Huntersville Grades: Infant-Grade 8 Enrollment: 190 Tuition: $1,000-$1,900 monthly At Guidepost, children gain the knowledge, confidence, creativity and social ability to pursue selfchosen goals over time. Holy Trinity Catholic Middle School 3100 Park Road, Charlotte | 704-527-7822 Grades: 6-8 Student-Teacher Ratio: 15:1 Tuition: $8,475-$13,131 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions School offers one-to-one technology, STEM, robotics, award-winning band, broadcast journalism, marketing, graphic design and championship-winning athletics. Transportation offered. Intellicor International Academy 4301 Shamrock Drive, Charlotte 704-290-2000 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 90 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9-1 Religious Affiliation: Islam Tuition: $5,500-$5,800 A student-focused, educational entity, promoting students and community development according to the professional pedagogical and psychological knowledge and according to the tolerant teachings of Islam. Transportation offered.



Ivybrook Academy Huntersville 10230 Hamptons Park Drive, Huntersville 704-655-9583 Grades: PK Tuition: Call to inquire regarding tuition Student-Teach Ratio: 1:4-1:10, based on grade Principal Tamara McDonald is honored to be bringing Ivybrook Academy’s unique approach to early childhood education to the Huntersville community. Tamara has been a dedicated member of the education field for 20 years and is driven by her passion to support children on their journey to greatness. Ivybrook Academy Myers Park 347 N. Caswell Road, Suite 101 704-901-8225 Grades: PK Tuition: Call to inquire regarding tuition Student-Teach Ratio: 1:4-1:10, based on grade Their award-winning Myers Park Campus is located close in proximity to the neighborhoods of Elizabeth and Myers Park in Charlotte. “This beautiful community, rich in history, engaging and diverse, is home to some of Charlotte’s oldest major businesses and residential areas,” the school says. The John Crosland School 5146 Parkway Plaza Blvd., Charlotte 704-365-5490 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 72 Student-Teacher Ratio: 7-1 Tuition: $19,346-$25,970 Since 1978, The John Crosland School has provided students with specific attention and learning differences an individualized college-preparatory education in an environment that nurtures and protects school values of curiosity, talents, character, humanity and dreams.


Kent Academy 1814 Euclid Ave., Charlotte 704-996-8283 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 20-40 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9-1 Tuition: $15,000-$16,000 A small environment with individualized and integrated curriculum that utilizes community resources. Keystone Montessori School 2830 Dorchester Place, Charlotte 980-355-0900 Grades: K-6 Enrollment: 55 Student-Teacher Ratio: 15-1 Tuition: $6,450-$11,200 An authentic AMI recognized Montessori program for ages 3 to 12. Montessori education is scientifically and logically based on the natural development, tendencies and interests of children. Lake Norman Christian School 16301 Old Statesville Road, Huntersville | 704-987-9811 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 112 Student-Teacher Ratio: 7-1 Religious Affiliation: Christian, nondenominational Tuition: $9,750-$11,350 Accredited by the Association of Christian Schools International, as well as the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (AdvanEd). Founded in 2008. Manus Academy 6203 Carmel Road, Charlotte 704-542-6471 Grades: 3-12 Enrollment: 60 Student-Teacher Ratio: 6-1 Tuition: $24,000-$25,000 An accredited, private school that specializes in working with students with learning barriers. Students build essential academic skills and successfully complete their coursework, solve problems and meet the demands of their school environment.


Northside Christian Academy 333 Jeremiah Blvd., Charlotte | 704-596-4074 Grades: PK-12 Enrollment: 300 Student-Teacher Ratio: 16-1 Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition: $8,000-$9,500 The mission of Northside Christian Academy is to partner with families to provide a Christ-centered, biblically based education in the pursuit of excellence. Omni Montessori School Blakeney campus: 9536 Blakeney Heath Road, Charlotte 704-541-1326 Waxhaw campus: 7118 McWhorter Road, Waxhaw | 704-843-3335 Grades: 3 years-grade 9 Enrollment: 180 Tuition: $10,719-$19,883 Dedicated to developing skilled, resourceful and caring members of society who value discovery and excellence, and contribute with purpose to the world. Each campus includes indoor and outdoor environments designed to meet the needs of student development. Our Lady of Assumption Catholic School 4225 Shamrock Drive, Charlotte | 704-531-0067 Grades: PK-8 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions Tuition: $4,941-$13,131 School offers STEM, library, makerspace, athletics, guitar, band and a special learning program. Transportation offered. Palisades Episcopal School 13120 Grand Palisades Pkwy., Charlotte | 704-583-1825 Grades: JK-8 Enrollment: 200 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9-1 Religious Affiliation: Episcopal Tuition: $1,244-$14,686 Provides a classical education challenging the mind, body and spirit. Small class sizes allow for differentiated instruction and service integration, students graduate as lifelong learners academically prepared for high school and beyond. Transportation offered.

Philips Academy 3115 Providence Road, Charlotte 704-365-4533 Grades: 6-12, and adult Enrollment: 50 Student-Teacher Ratio: 6-1 Tuition: $21,700 Provides middle and high school students with complex learning disabilities the academic, occupational and social skills needed to be self-reliant, confident, contributing members of their communities. Phoenix Montessori Academy 12340 Mt. Holly-Huntersville Road, Huntersville 704-875-2139 Grades: 18 months-grade 12 Enrollment: 124 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8-1 Tuition: $9,312-$17,154 To develop true scholars, lifelong learners, and productive citizens of the world in a diverse atmosphere that incorporates Montessori principles where students demonstrate respect and love for self, others, and their environment. Providence Day School 5800 Sardis Road, Charlotte | 704-887-6000 Grades: TK-12 Enrollment: 1,830 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8-1 Tuition: $19,900-$28,250 Providence Day prepares students to be empathetic problem solvers and active global citizens through a global curriculum. It inspires a passion for learning, a commitment to personal integrity and a sense of social responsibility. Transportation offered. Shands School 12043 Guion Ln., Matthews | 704-231-2355 Grades: 2-8 Enrollment: 10 Student-Teacher Ratio: 5-1 Tuition: $14,500 Teaches to individual learning styles and encourages independent thinking for children with different learning styles. Extracurricular classes complement the science-based curriculum.

South Charlotte Baptist Academy 12416 Lancaster Hwy., Pineville 704-544-7323 Grades: PK-9 Enrollment: 51 Student-Teacher Ratio: 15-1 Religious Affiliation: Independent Baptist Tuition: $4,900-$5,900 South Charlotte Baptist Academy uses the A Beka curriculum, a Biblebased curriculum, from Pensacola Christian Academy. SouthLake Christian Academy 13820 Hagers Ferry Road, Huntersville 704-949-2200 Grades: JK-12 Enrollment: 586 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8-1 Religious Affiliation: Presbyterian Tuition: $8,950-$13,450 A co-educational, private day school in the Lake Norman area. The college preparatory curriculum is taught with a Christian worldview on the 30-acre campus. Transportation offered. St. Ann Catholic School 600 Hillside Ave., Charlotte | 704-525-4938 Grades: PK-5 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions Tuition: $4,941-$12,167 School offers STEM, band, special learning program, family events and library. Transportation offered. St. Gabriel Catholic School 3028 Providence Road, Charlotte 704-366-2409 Grades: K-5 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions Tuition: $7,545-$12,167 School offers musical theater, STEM, band, family events, technology, library and Jaguar TV. Transportation offered.

St. Mark Catholic School 14750 Stumptown Road, Huntersville 704-766-5000 Grades: K-8 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions Tuition: $7,545-$13,131 School offers STEM, robotics, musical theater, band, chorus, athletics and family events. Transportation offered. St. Matthew Catholic School 11525 Elm Lane, Charlotte | 704-544-2070 Grades: TK-5 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions Tuition: $7,545-$12,167 Located in Ballantyne, school offers STEM, library, band and family events. Transportation offered. St. Patrick Catholic School 1125 Buchanan St., Charlotte 704-333-3174 Grades: K-5 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions Tuition: $7,545-$12,167 This Dilworth area school offers STEM, musical theater, technology, library, athletics, band, family events and special learning program. The Cyzner Institute 7022 Sardis Road, Charlotte | 704-366-8260 Grades: PK-8 Enrollment: 27 students Student-Teacher Ratio: 2-1 A private educational, therapeutic center for children with learning differences or special developmental and behavioral needs.

The Epiphany School of Charlotte 1000 E. Morehead St., Charlotte 704-496-9942 Grades: 3-9 Enrollment: 12 Student-Teacher Ratio: 6-1 Tuition: $22,300 An independent day school dedicated to providing programs for students with Asperger’s or other social communication differences to help build success skills for high school and beyond. The Fletcher School 8500 Sardis Road, Charlotte 704-365-4658 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 263 Student-Teacher Ratio: 6-1 Tuition: $26,400-$27,850 Serves students with learning differences by offering a multisensory, college-prep curriculum. Students learn in small, structured classes. Individual and prescriptive learning plans are developed for each student. Trinity Episcopal School 750 E. 9th St, Charlotte, NC 28202 | 704-358-8101 Grades: K-8 Enrollment: 440 Religious affiliation: Episcopal, all faith backgrounds welcome Student-teacher ratio: 11-1 Tuition: $19,562-$21,435 Located in uptown Charlotte’s First Ward, Trinity is a progressive, constructivist K-8 school that inspires students to become insightful thinkers, engaged citizens and innovative problemsolvers. Graduates are grounded in reason, openness and inclusivity.

United Faith Christian Academy 8617 Providence Road, Charlotte | 704-541-1742 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 243 Student-Teacher Ratio: 11-1 to 24-1, depending on grade Religious Affiliation: Christian, nondenominational Tuition: $9,320-$12,202 Academy offers accredited collegepreparatory, Christ-centered education for academically motivated students with opportunities for leadership and service. CABARRUS COUNTY Cannon School 5801 Poplar Tent Road, Concord | 704-786-8171 Grades: JK-12 Enrollment: 1,040 Student-Teacher Ratio: 9:1 Tuition: $18,330-$25,080 A learning environment of trust and support, with faculty and staff who are deeply committed to each child’s journey of academic and personal growth. Financial aid available. Covenant Classical School 3200 Patrick Henry Drive, Concord 704-792-1854 Grades: K4-12 Enrollment: 280 Student-Teacher Ratio: Varies by grade level Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition: $3,026-$8,386 Covenant Classical School was founded in 1996 and provides an academically excellent education that is biblically based and classically taught to students in grades K4-12.

Trinity Christian Preparatory School 7516 E. Independence Blvd., Suite 100, Charlotte | 704-569-1900 Grades: 8-12 Enrollment: 87 Student-Teacher Ratio: 11-1 Tuition: $15,275 School offers flexibility for students academic needs and prompt communication with parents.



HOPE Academy 7655 Bruton Smith Blvd., Concord | 704-999-2436 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 165 Student-Teacher Ratio: 10-1 Religious Affiliation: Nondenominational Tuition:$6,660-$7,844 A Christian University-Model school. Students are taught by professional instructors three days per week, and HOPE provides the materials for parents to work with students at home two days per week. The Daniel Academy 681 Sunderland Road SW, Concord | 980-221-1698 Grades: K4-12 Enrollment: 43 Student-Teacher Ratio: 7-1 Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition: $4,200 to $12,200 Founded in August 2010, The Daniel Academy of Concord is a K4-12 Family Partnership Private School serving Cabarrus County and the surrounding areas. GASTON COUNTY Gaston Christian School 1625 Lowell Bethesda Road, Gastonia | 704-824-4128 Grades: PK-12 Enrollment: 900 Student-Teacher Ratio: Varies by grade level Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition: $3,168-$8,940 Gaston Christian School is a nondenominational, collegepreparatory school, located on a 66-acre campus that includes a newly constructed fine arts center, six tennis courts, an eight-lane track and a lighted soccer complex. Founded in 1980.


Gaston Day School 2001 Gaston Day School Road, Gastonia | 704-864-7744 Grades: PK-12 Enrollment: 500 Student-Teacher Ratio: 10-1 Tuition: $3,605-$17,725 A nonsectarian, college-preparatory school with the mission to educate students and prepare them for academic success and responsible, productive lives. Founded in 1967. Saint Michael Catholic School 704 St. Michaels Lane, Gastonia | 704-865-4382 Grades: PK-8 Religious Affiliation: Catholic, accepts all religions Tuition: $6,085-$8,380 Saint Michael offers Spanish, dance, band, STEM, robotics, athletics, art, faith and service, family events, library and technology. IREDELL COUNTY Liberty Preparatory Christian Academy 229 Midway Lake Road, Mooresville | 704-660-3933 Grades: PK-12 Enrollment: 325 Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition: $5,700-$6,700 Liberty Prep uses a modified classical approach with a focus on critical thinking skills and developing the love of learning. Woodlawn School 135 School Loop Road, Mooresville 704-895-8653 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 182 Student-Teacher Ratio: 7-1 Tuition: $15,000-$20,085 Hands-on, project-based learning forms the heart of the curriculum with active, engaged, studentcentered instruction using the most progressive methods.


LINCOLN COUNTY Starboard Christian Academy 2380 Lake Shore Road S., Denver 704-775-3724 Grades: K-4 Enrollment: 25 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8-1 Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition:$4,950 A K-3 grade school with a unique three-day/two-day schedule that partners with families to provide a quality, cost-effective, collegepreparatory education. UNION COUNTY Arborbrook Christian Academy 4823 Waxhaw-Indian Trail Road, Matthews | 704-821-9952 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 215 Student-Teacher Ratio: 8-1 Religious Affiliation: Christian, nondenominational Tuition: $7,606-$8,762 A Charlotte Mason-style school recently ranked as No. 1 for private high schools in Union County by Niche. This community school strives to develop a love of learning through a biblical lens. Ivybrook Academy Weddington 9801 Suzanne Ct., Weddington 704-845-2310 Grades: PK Tuition: Call to inquire regarding tuition Student-Teach Ratio: 1:4-1:10, based on grade Since opening its doors in 2007, the school has been voted both the best private school and best pre-school in Charlotte for the last 5 years. “While we celebrate our achievements, we understand our most important charge is continuing the high caliber of education that we provide for our children,” it says.

Metrolina Christian Academy 732 Indian Trail-Fairview Road, Indian Trail 704-882-3375 Grades: TK-12 Enrollment: 1,100 Student-Teacher Ratio: 20-1 lower school; 22-1 upper school Religious Affiliation: Baptist Tuition: $6,684-$9,161 A private Christian school accredited by ACSI/AdvancEd. Offers academic excellence and opportunities for athletics, fine arts, clubs and service while partnering with parents to provide a biblical worldview. Thales Academy 8012 New Town Road, Waxhaw | 704-256-5370 Grades: K-7 Student-Teacher Ratio: 18-1 Tuition: $5,300 The mission of Thales Academy is to provide an excellent, high-quality and affordable education through the use of direct instruction and a classical curriculum that embodies traditional American values. Weddington Christian Academy 13901 Providence Road, Weddington 704-846-1039 Grades: JK-8 Enrollment: 130 Student-Teacher Ratio: 10-1 Religious Affiliation: Methodist Tuition: $7,153-$11,935 Weddington Christian Academy provides an education of academic excellence and Christian spiritual development in a faith community that challenges the mind, prepares the heart and nurtures the soul. YORK COUNTY Academy Christian School 129 Border Road W., Rock Hill 803-327-5673 Grades: K-12 Student-Teacher Ratio: 10-1 Tuition: $4,800 Academy Christian School uses the ACE Pace curriculum, a unique learning system meets the need of each student.

Ivybrook Academy Fort Mill 873 Dave Gibson Blvd., Fort Mill, S.C. | 803-802-2390 Grades: PK Tuition: Call to inquire regarding tuition Student-Teach Ratio: 1:4-1:10, based on grade Ivybrook Academy-Fort Mill is an award-winning half-day preschool in Fort Mill, recognized nationally for “our innovative and progressive curriculum that offers our students unlimited possibilities and opportunities.” Providence Classical School 318 N. Jones Ave., Rock Hill 803-900-9582 Grades: K-12 Enrollment: 165 Student-Teacher Ratio: 12-1 Religious Affiliation: Christian Tuition: $5,900-$6,175 Partners with parents in the education of students and uses a classical methodology.

St. Anne Catholic High School Lower school: 1698 Bird St., Rock Hill 803-324-4814 High school: 292 Munn Road, Fort Mill 803-548-0073 Grades: K3-12 Enrollment: 425 Student-Teacher Ratio: 11-1 Religious Affiliation: Catholic Tuition: $3,500-$10,285 Uniting the long-standing tradition of Catholic education with a personalized learning experience. Students develop individual identity and become virtuous leaders of society. Transportation offered.

Village Montessori & Preparatory School 1525 Onyx Ridge, Fort Mill 803-462-5288 Grades: PK-K Tuition: $5,430-$15,912 VMPS offers full- and part-time preschool programs, transitional kindergarten, private kindergarten, literacy coaching, math tutoring, and after-school care for ages 5-12.

Westminster Catawba Christian School 2650 India Hook Road, Rock Hill | 803-366-4119 Grades: Infants-Grade 12 Enrollment: 500 Student-Teacher Ratio: 16-1 Religious Affiliation: Presbyterian Tuition: $2,210-$12,220 A Christ-centered, collegepreparatory day school.

Walnut Grove Christian School 1036 Maxwell Mill Road, Fort Mill | 803-835-2000 Grades: K-12 Student-Teacher Ratio: 13-1 to 15-1 Religious Affiliation: Chrsitian Tuition: $8,450-$8,955 Provides a Christ-centered approach to education in an environment where students develop lasting relationships through a schedule that allows time for them to invest in activities in which they are passionate.

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Concord Lake STEAM Academy | 704-273-5310 1911 Concord Lake Road, Kannapolis Grades: K-8 Offers an individualized learning environment that includes parent participation. Before- and after-school care offered. Uniforms required. Offers middle school athletics. Founded in 2016. GASTON COUNTY Mountain Island Charter School | 704-827-8840 13440 Lucia-Riverbend Highway, Mount Holly Grades: K-12 Offers a traditional curriculum within a positive, challenging learning environment. Athletic programs and before- and after-school care available. Limited transportation. Founded in 2010.

UPDATED BY CHARLOTTE PARENT STAFF Charter schools are publicly funded, independently run schools authorized by the N.C. Board of Education and operated by independent nonprofit board of directors. Charter schools are held accountable through the state assessment and accountability system, including annual standardized testing. Many charters offer unique programming and smaller classroom settings, and all are free to attend. Each has its own application dates and processes, with many using an open lottery admission system. *Charter schools included are those in operation as of the 2020-2021 school year. Grades listed are anticipated for 2021-2022 school year.


CABARRUS COUNTY A.C.E. Academy | 704-456-7153 7807 Caldwell Road, Harrisburg Grades: K-8 Project-based learning with emphasis on entrepreneurship, leadership, financial literacy, and problem solving. Transportation offered. Beforeand after-school care available. Founded in 2014. Cabarrus Charter Academy | 704-789-2500 Lower Campus (K-5): 355 Poplar Crossing Drive NW, Concord Upper Campus (6-12): 7550 Ruben Linker Rd NW, Concord Grades: K-12 A rigorous and productive learning environment. Parent participation required. Athletics available. Uniforms required. Before- and after-school care available. Founded in 2013. Carolina International School | 704-455-3847 9545 Poplar Tent Road, Concord Grades: K-12 Nurtures students’ natural curiosity through a challenging, interdisciplinary, international curriculum. Arts and athletics offered. Founded in 2004.


Ridgeview Charter School | 980-208-7782 207 W. Bradley St., Gastonia Grades: K-4 Built on strong relationships with parents, students and the community. Founded 2019. Iredell County American Renaissance School | 704-924-8870 132 E. Broad St., Statesville Grades: K-8 Students keep the same teacher and classmates in kindergarten and first grade. Clubs offered. Beforeand after-school care available. Founded in 1999. Iredell Charter Academy | 704-508-0104 251 Home Improvement St., Troutman Grades: K-8 The school focuses on personalized learning for each student. Advanced program is available. Parents are required to commit to volunteer hours. Limited transportation and before- and afterschool care available. Founded in 2016.



Piedmont Community Charter School | 704-853-2428 Elementary Campus: 119 E. Second Ave., Gastonia Middle School Campus: 2970 S. New Hope Road, Gastonia High School: 2596 Robinwood Road, Gastonia Grades: K-12 College-preparatory school. Offers arts and clubs. Middle and high school athletics offered. New high school campus to open in August 2020. Founded in 2000.

Langtree Charter Academy | 704-705-1698 Lower Campus: 154 Foundation Court, Mooresville Upper Campus: 185 W. Waterlynn Road, Mooresville Grades: K-12 Focus on citizenship and experimental learning. Parent participation required. Athletics and before- and after-school care are available. Founded in 2013. Pine Lake Preparatory | 704-237-5304 104 Yellow Wood Circle, Mooresville Grades: K-12 Offers college-prep coursework, an arts program, community-service learning, literature-rich curriculum and after-school program. Exceptional student program available. Founded in 2007. Success Charter School | 704-881-0441 1424-2 Rickert St., Statesville Grades: K-8 Uses Common Core curriculum, foundational principles of business, and key elements of entrepreneurial success. Athletics offered. Transportation and before- and after-school programs available. Founded in 2000. LINCOLN COUNTY Lincoln Charter School | 704-483-6611 7834 Galway Lane, Denver Grades: K-12 A college-prep school that offers a small school environment. Middle and high school athletics, clubs, arts and service opportunities offered. Transportation available. Founded in 1998. West Lake Preparatory Academy | 704-966-2202 1691 Forney Creek Pkwy., Denver Grades: K-8 Offers a college-preparatory education that empowers students through individualized learning plans that promote strong character, independence and leadership. Founded in 2019. MECKLENBURG COUNTY Aristotle Preparatory Academy | 704-215-4550 8101 Fallsdale Drive, Charlotte Grades: K-7 Offers data-driven instruction, with a focus on character development, as well as core and STEM classes. Art and athletics offered. Transportation and after-school programs available. Founded in 2013.

Bradford Preparatory School | 704-549-0080 2502 Salome Church Road, Charlotte Grades: K-12 A college-prep school that uses innovative teaching methods in a small, responsive learning environment. Middle and high school athletics offered. Extensive college counseling beginning in seventh grade. Founded in 2014. Bonnie Cone Classical Academy | 704-727-6833 10700 Asbury Chapel Road, Huntersville Grades: K-8 Bonnie Cone Classical Academy academics are based on the rigors of a classical education. Transportation and after-school care available. Uniforms required. Founded in 2019. Eastside STREAM Academy | 980-272-8308 3124 Milton Road, Charlotte Grades: K-8 Emphasis on science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM). Clubs, activities, athletics, and transportation available. Founded in 2013. Charlotte Lab School | 704-464-3830 Primary School: 600 Seigle Ave., Charlotte Lower School: 301 E. Ninth Street, Charlotte Upper School: 3325 S. Tryon St., Charlotte Grades: K-10 Personalized, innovative learning that provides students with necessary skills to thrive in the 21st century. Founded in 2015.

Community School of Davidson | 704-897-8061 404 Armour St., Davidson Grades: K-12 Teachers and parents work together to create an inclusive community with a focus on hands-on learning. After-school care available and athletics offered. Founded in 2004. Corvian Community School | 704-717-7550 Elementary: 9501 David Taylor Drive, Charlotte Middle: 4125 Johnston Oehler Road, Charlotte High: 4041 Johnston Oehler Road, Charlotte Grades: K-10 Addresses the cognitive, emotional, social and physical needs of each student. Teachers and parents work together to create an inclusive community of learning. Athletics, and beforeand after-school care offered. Founded in 2012. Invest Collegiate Transform 704-370-4000 | 2045 Suttle Ave., Charlotte Grades: K-8 Uses “immersive leaningscapes” to help prepare students for the future. Uniforms required. Limited transportation offered. Founded in 2013. East Voyager Academy of Charlotte | 704-412-6988 7429 Tuckaseegee Road, Charlotte Grades: PK-7 Graduates students with English-Chinese bilingual proficiency, strong academics and intercultural competence. Founded in 2018. Invest Collegiate Transform 704-370-4000 | 2045 Suttle Ave., Charlotte Grades: K-11 Uses “immersive leaningscapes” to help prepare students for the future. Uniforms required. Limited transportation offered. Founded in 2013.

Charlotte Secondary School | 704-295-0137 8601 McAlpine Park Drive, Charlotte Grades: 6-12 This college-prep school utilizes a Paideia philosophy for the instruction of students, focusing on didactic, intellectual coaching and seminar-based teaching. Athletics are available. Founded in 2007. Commonwealth High School | 704-899-4998 5112 Central Ave., Charlotte Grades: 9-12 Flexible scheduling options and personalized academic plans help students aim for success and earn high school diplomas. Founded in 2014.

KIPP Charlotte | 704-537-2044 K-4 Campus: 5431 Hickory Grove Road 5-8 Campus: 931 Wilann Dr. Grades: K-8 This college-preparatory school offers athletics, arts and extra-curriculars. Founded in 2007. Lake Norman Charter | 704-948-8600 10019 Hambright Road, Huntersville Grades: K-12 This charter school aims to build community leaders with the lifelong desire to learn, lead and serve. Offers extracurriculars and athletics. Founded in 1998.



Lakeside Charter Academy | 704-896-9500 17609 Old Statesville Road, Cornelius Grades: K-8 Provides students with a focused and coherent curriculum through the Core Knowledge Sequence by E.D. Hirsch. Uniforms required. Before- and after-school care offered.

Pioneer Springs Community School | 704-494-0777 9300 Bob Beatty Road, Charlotte Grades: K-10 A holistic and nature-based school teaches core concepts in a real-world context. Special-area classes include ceramics, yoga, art and Spanish. After-school care offered. Founded in 2014.

Steele Creek Preparatory Academy | 980-243-5580 2200 Shopton Road, Charlotte Grades: K-8 A rigorous, personalized learning environment designed to build academic and critical thinking skills. Before- and after-school care available. Uniforms required. Founded in 2019.

Mallard Creek STEM Academy | 980-288-4811 9142 Browne Road, Charlotte Grades: K-8 Using a workshop model, students take ownership of their learning. Clubs and athletics offered. Transportation and before- and after-school care available. Founded in 2016.

Queen City STEM School | 980-299-6633 Elementary: 8701 Mallard Creek Road, Charlotte Middle/High School: 9108 A-B Mallard Creek Road, Charlotte Grades: K-10 Research- and inquiry-based curriculum. Student clubs, plus free after-school and weekend tutoring available. Uniforms required. Transportation available. Founded in 2015.

Sugar Creek Charter | 704-509-5470 K-8 Campus: 4101 N. Tryon St., Charlotte High School Campus: 7815 Old Concord Road, Charlotte Grades: K-12 The mission of this school is to eliminate generational poverty of low-income students of color. The curriculum focuses on academic preparation, life skills, and individualized support for college or career goals. Athletics offered. Transportation offered. Founded in 1999.

Matthews Charter Academy 980-339-5449 2332 Mount Harmony Church Road, Matthews Grades: K-8 School curriculum concentrates on real-world skills, problem solving and how to be a good citizen. Offers sports, music, arts and clubs. Beforeand after-school care offered. Founded in 2016. Metrolina Regional Scholars Academy | 704-503-1112 5225 Seventy-Seven Center Drive, Charlotte Grades: K-8 Offers a differentiated and challenging learning environment, that caters to intellectually gifted children. Athletics, extracurriculars, and beforeand after-school care available. Founded in 2000. Jackson Day School | 704-391-5516 1209 Little Rock Road, Charlotte Grades: K-12 Focus on character, ethics, service, physical and emotional health in a creative and positive environment that enhances learning and growing. The school works as a small-school model. Founded in 2009. Movement Charter School | 704-585-1356 Eastland Campus: 5249 Central Ave., Charlotte Freedom Dr. Elementary Campus: 2701 Freedom Dr., Charlotte Freedom Dr. Middle Campus: 2701 Freedom Dr., Charlotte Grades: K-8 The school believes in world-class academics, individualized learning and character development. After-school care is available at the school. Bus transportation available. Uniforms required. Founded 2017.


Queen’s Grant Community School 704-573-6611 6400 Matthews Mint Hill Road, Mint Hill Grades: K-8 Focus on student responsibility, parental partnership and academic excellence with a moral focus. Partnering daycares in the area provide before- and after-school care. Athletics and extracurriculars available. Uniforms required. Founded in 2002.

Telra Institute | 704-727-2530 807 S. Trade St., Matthews Grades: K-5 Terla Institute opened in the fall of 2021. With five days of math, humanities, and PE per week, the school says its program is “balanced to educate the whole child.”

Socrates Academy | 980-243-5580 2200 Shopton Road, Charlotte Grades: K-7 A rigorous, personalized learning environment designed to build academic and critical thinking skills. Before- and after-school care available. Uniforms required. Founded in 2019.

United Community Charter School | 980-819-0555 1406 Suther Road, Charlotte Grades: K-8 An A+ school with curriculum based around the arts. A+ Schools combine interdisciplinary teaching and daily arts instruction. After-school care available. Extended day program available. Transportation offered. Founded in 2014.

Stewart Creek High School | 704-321-1711 3909 Weddington Road, Matthews Grades: K-8 This school uses the Socratic Method, teaching students reading, writing and math in both English and Greek. Athletics and before- and after-school care available. Founded in 2005.

Unity Classical Charter School | 980-202-5899 1929 W. Arrowood Road, Charlotte Grades: K-6 Focus on a classical education with a curriculum based on Western history and culture, especially that of Greece, Rome and Western Europe. Founded in 2017.

Southwest Charlotte STEM Academy | 980-505-8344 5203 Shopton Road, Charlotte Grades: K-6 Promotes high academic achievement by increasing student engagement through a workshop model that encourages and empowers students to take ownership of their own learning. Before- and after-school care available. Transportation offered. Uniforms required. Founded in 2019.

UpROAR Leadership Academy | 980-585-3722 5500 N. Tryon St., Charlotte Grades: 5-11 A college-prep academy that includes honors and advanced placement classes, fine arts, musical and theatrical skill development. Middle school sports available. Uniforms required. Transportation offered. Beforeand after-school care. Founded in 2017.


YORK COUNTY Riverwalk Academy | 803-327-8400 5750 Mt. Gallant Road, Rock Hill Grades: K-12 Focus on project-based learning that incorporates team teaching and collaboration in classroom. Students are immersed in the “K16Ready” program that prepares students for a “college going culture.” Before- and after-school care offered. Founded in 2013.

VERITAS Community School | 980-677-0101 2600 Grimes St., Charlotte Grades: K-7 This school aims to empower the scholar and athlete in every child, using health and wellness practices in a peaceful environment. Transportation and before- and after-school programs available. Uniforms required. Founded in 2015. UNION COUNTY Apprentice Academy High School of North Carolina | 980-313-8610 2505 Weddington Road, Monroe Grades: 9-12 Provides students with a career- and technology-focused career prep as well as college-prep curriculum. Founded in 2019.

Every school has a story...welcome to ours.

Monroe Charter Academy | 980-210-3627 2850 Old Charlotte Hwy., Monroe Grades: K-5 Mission to create academically thriving citizens, by partnering with parents and the community and utilizing high expectations as well as a rigorous classical education. Founded in 2019. Union Academy Charter School | 704-238-8883 675 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Monroe Grades: K-12 Offers small-class sizes. After-school care is available for children in grades K-8, and athletics are available for middle and high school students. Transportation available.

York Preparatory Academy | 803-324-4400 1047 Golden Gate Court, Rock Hill Grades: K-12 Committed to high-academic rigor with a college-prep focus. It uses hands-on innovative learning in classrooms, and offers athletic and arts programs. Founded in 2010.

At Carmel Christian School we offer an excellent education built on biblical truth, which equips students to reflect Christ to the world. Our students participate in a challenging college preparatory curriculum taught through the lens of a biblical worldview. We are a community in which academic excellence, artistic expression and athletic distinction are marked by intentional discipleship. We partner with Christian parents to nurture and challenge the potential of each student. Join us for an Admissions Open House and discover Our Story! Now Accepting applications online for the 2022-2023 school year.

Union Day School | 704-256-1494 3000 Tilley Morris Road, Weddington Grades: K-8 This school offers collaborative environments and rigorous classrooms to promote high levels of learning. Before and after-school care available. Founded in 2016. Union Preparatory Academy at Indian Trail | 704-893-3607 2324 Younts Road, Indian Trail Grades: K-8 Uses personalized learning plans to best accommodate its students. Parents are required to participate in a set number of volunteer hours. Before- and after-school care available. Limited transportation available. Uniforms required. Founded in 2016.


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Charlotte Prep Celebrating 50 years of excellence & innovation in education! At Charlotte Prep, our students are challenged by teaching and learning that fosters creative thinking, empowers rigorous problem-solving, and encourages children to grow into the heroes of their own stories.

What will your child's story be? We invite you to visit us and explore the possibilities by using the QR code or calling us today! 704-366-5994

Choosing the best school community for your child is a critical decision. We all want a school with dedicated teachers who bring learning to life and stretch our children’s minds to achieve their full potential. At Latin, crafting an education that is individualized and personal is important to our faculty. We want our students to grow up with strong character and to be confident leaders. Leadership, honor, work ethic, friendship, teamwork, inclusivity, empathy, and compassion are taught not only in the classroom, but also on the athletic field, the stage, and in clubs and organizations. Charlotte Latin is a community that is intentionally designed to capture every teachable moment as each year builds on the next, pedagogically and personally. Our 128 contiguous acres provide a setting with plenty of space for children to explore. State-of-the art facilities like our new Inlustrate Orbem Building, world-class Horne Performing Arts Center, nationally-known Fab Lab, and Beck Student Activities Center, as well as eight athletic fields, an outdoor challenge course, and Lake Latin, provides spaces for children that enhance their educational setting. Charlotte Latin School has more than 1,500 students. Kindergarten, sixth grade, and ninth grade are the primary entrance points.

Learn more at 704.846.7207