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Cornelius News

CMS buses out and about with food, WiFi

Sept. 3. By Dave Vieser. The school buses you are seeing around town don’t necessarily mean that Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools are getting back to normal anytime soon. CMS buses are delivering meals pursuant to federal food programs, while other CMS buses are being used to establish WiFi connectivity in areas with weak internet connectivity.

“My understanding is that the WiFi buses will usually be stationary during the day,” said Charles Jeter, CMS Executive Director for Government Affairs, Policy, and Board Services. “So far we’ve had about two out this week, but that number should increase,” the Huntersville resident said

No one knows the exact final goal for the number of buses providing the WiFi service. “Some of that will be determined on the state allowing us to use existing funding to pay for this service moving forward,” Jeter said.

In that regard, the district wrote to key members of the state General Assembly on Aug. 27, asking that they provide more flexibility for funding needed services. “We recognize that these are significant changes to the established operating framework for public schools,” said Elyse Dashew, chair of the CMS Board of Education. “However, the changes we are requesting will allow us to continue offering the best public education possible to our students.

As to when schools will resume normal operations, neither school board nor district officials would hazard a guess. “The situation remains fluid,” officials noted in their correspondence to the state.