Community Need

Too many Spanish-speaking children in our community are being denied the benefits of a good education because of gaps in their literacy development.

  • Nearly 1 of 4 babies born in Mecklenburg County is Latin American, many of whom are born to immigrant parents with high hopes for their children but few financial resources.
  • Burdened by the stressors of poverty and acculturation, these children typically start kindergarten at an average of 12-18 months behind their peers with respect to language development and pre-reading skills.
  • CMS faces a growing number of students entering kindergarten with little or no English proficiency.
  • Latino children comprise 18.5% of Charlotte-Mecklenburg School’s (CMS) total student enrollment, but only 65% of them are graduating from high school.
  • Most teachers are not equipped with techniques that support dual-language learning.