opportunity for every child


4421 Stuart Andrew Blvd.

Suite 100
Charlotte, NC 28217

Donate Now

A few words

About Us​

The CMS Foundation is the official nonprofit partner for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. In our unique position as the trusted bridge between CMS and the philanthropic community, we leverage and steward private dollars to help the district achieve its highest strategic goals. We work to ensure that private investments have a meaningful, sustainable impact on public education in our community.

The knowledge and skills required to succeed in our global society continue to evolve, and so do the needs of our education system. Public funding alone is not sufficient to provide our students and teachers the opportunities they need and deserve. It takes the support of our entire community.

read more

fundraising priorities

our work

We work closely with CMS educators to understand district priorities and identify opportunities to maximize student achievement through the investment of private resources. With the help of our generous philanthropic community, we seed initiatives and help expand programs that support our students and educators.


Strengthening the Teacher Pipeline

Addressing the critical need for teachers, the CMS Teaching Residency program provides an alternative pathway for passionate, skilled individuals to become licensed classroom teachers.


Elevating Teacher Voices

Through our Teacher Talks lecture series and other storytelling initiatives, we help ensure CMS educators have opportunities to be seen, heard, innovate, collaborate and share best practices.


Teacher Innovation Grants

Through grants awarded to CMS teachers, the Teacher Innovation Fund supports the implementation of school-based, innovative strategies to  prepare students for college and career success.


COVID-19 Relief Fund

Our COVID-19 Relief Fund is helping students stay connected to their classrooms with technology and closing the connectivity gap as CMS students and teachers work diligently to continue learning during the COVID-19 crisis.

in your words

voices & stories

Stay updated and explore the stories, ideas, and experiences of people throughout the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools community.

The Yearbook

Explore stories of CMS students, staff, parents, and community partners navigating school during the COVID-19 pandemic in this special project.

teacher talks

When teachers talk, we listen. Watch CMS teachers deliver a variety of education (and life) focused lessons in this curated lecture series.

made in cms

Hear first-person stories from alumni as they reflect on their favorite teachers and school experiences as students in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools.

news & events

Visit our digital newsroom to stay up-to-date on the latest events, fundraising priorities, program updates, community engagement opportunities, and more.

our community

stay connected

Follow along on social media and get connected to our community of teachers, students, parents, and other schoolanthropists like you who are making an impact in education.

It’s our favorite time of the year 🥰 Join us on 3/9 for Teacher Talks 2023: SPARK! Five new @CharMeckSchools voices will take the stage to share powerful messages with our community. Come ready to be inspired! Tickets available @ teachertalks.eventbrite.com (link in bio ⬆️ ⬆️ ⬆️ ) ...

11 0

A BIG thank you to everyone who supported us as part of #GivingTuesdayCLT. With nearly $20K in donations this week, we’re well on our way to our $50K Mobilize for Impact campaign goal 😄 We appreciate our community for investing in @CharMeckSchools students and educators! ...

9 0

This #GivingTuesdayCLT help create new opportunities for @CharMeckSchools students and educators by supporting the CMS Foundation! Every donation makes a difference ☺️ Text GIVECMSF to 44-321 or visit bit.ly/cmsf_mobilize to make an impact today! ...

25 0

Are you ready to INNOVATE? We're gearing up to expand our support of school-based innovation 🤩 Kicking off with a very special session for @CharMeckSchools educators with Ted Dintersmith & @SchoolCouldBe next Tuesday, 11/8.

Learn more + RSVP by THIS Friday (link in bio ⬆️ )

17 3

Congrats to @CharMeckSchools students and staff for a great start to the school year! Today we're sending a special shout out to our CMS Teaching Residents who started their new career journeys as classroom teachers this week. We’re so proud to be a part of Team CMS 😊

Photo: CMSTR alum Ken Lowman in his zone. Ken is a Retired Marine who's now teaching middle school math.

20 2

Happy First Day of School to all @CharMeckSchools students and staff! A new world of learning and adventure awaits! Let's make it a great year 😄 ...

10 1

Kim Tuttle | Ken Lowman | Larenda Denien | Monica High

We are so excited for these @charmeckschools educators who will FINALLY take the stage THIS Thursday & share their experiences @ Teacher Talks 2022! You don’t want to miss it 😉

Grab your 🎟: cms-foundation.org/TeacherTalks2022 (quick click link in bio ⬆️)

25 4

After a 2-year delay, we are THRILLED to invite our community to Teacher Talks 2022 😆

Experience an incredible SURGE of power and inspiration. Join us as we elevate and CELEBRATE the voices of @charmeckschools educators.

3/17 | Halton Theater @ CPCC
Food + Drinks: 5:30 PM
Talks begin: 6:30 PM

Reserve your 🎟 today! Invite a friend ☺️ Event link in bio ⬆️⬆️⬆️

16 0

"I think when you talk about giving, giving is easy when times are good, and it's essential when times are tough."⠀

To wrap up this week's spotlights, we tip our hats to local small biz @girltribeco. After learning about the connectivity gap, co-founders Sarah & Carrie took $ from sales of their bestselling CLT hats to support internet service for @CharMeckSchools students.⠀

Definitely CLT proud! Check out their story and more in #TheYearbookProject (link in bio ⬆️ ⬆️ ⬆️ )

13 0

Ever wondered what it was like to be a school social worker (+during a pandemic)? Madeline Holly-Carothers can sum it for you:⠀

"Think of firefighters. Firefighters do much more than put out fires, but one could argue that the toughest crisis they respond to is probably putting out a fire. Thankfully, there usually aren't fires every day. Over the last year, especially in the beginning, for social workers, it has felt like everyone's house was on fire...every day." ⠀

Today in #TheYearbookProject, we invite you to enter her world (Link in bio ⬆️ ⬆️ ⬆️)

11 0

Today in #TheYearbookProject, meet Johnny McCoy: "I learned that I am a stronger person than I thought I was because I know plenty of times some people would have just cracked and just threw their hands up in the air and walked away from everything.” ⠀


Johnny saw his hours reduced, struggled to feed his three children and battled a very serious bout of COVID. Reflecting on it all, he believes he's stronger than before. Check out his story in The Yearbook (link in bio ⬆️ )

11 0

To celebrate the release of #TheYearbookProject, we're highlighting the amazing individuals featured in the project. Today, meet David Milligan, a literacy facilitator at PiedmontIB Middle School. Painful loss meets powerful resilience in his moving testimony of survival and purpose:⠀

"I’ve learned that I have the inner strength to persevere through ANY AND ALL OBSTACLES. In my lifetime I have had to deal with things that some people only read about, from being in Manhattan during 9/11, to suffering an aortic dissection and having emergency open heart surgery in 2016, to the stroke and all the other craziness of 2020. I learned that I am much stronger than I thought."⠀

Read his full story and more in #TheYearbookProject (link in bio ⬆️)

14 1

We’re excited to announce the release #TheYearbookProject TODAY in collaboration with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools 😆 We invite you to explore this special project highlighting the journeys of people navigating the school experience during COVID-19. It's been an honor documenting these stories. Project link in bio ⬆️⠀

Thank you to presenting sponsor @DukeEnergy and to @BankofAmerica, @Panthers, Scribbles Software, @TIAA and @WellsFargo for supporting The Yearbook.⠀

And a BIG thank you to every CMS student, staff member, parent, and partner who trusted us to share their story.⠀

Explore at http://cms-foundation.org/yearbook

23 2

We're excited to announce that we’ve been awarded a $20,000 grant from @DukeEnergy in support of the @CharMeckSchools Teaching Residency program to strengthen and diversify the CMS teacher pipeline! We appreciate the ongoing partnership with Duke Energy in our community. Great start to the week! #DEPowerfulCommunities ...

13 0

This spring, we're partnering with @CharMeckSchools to produce "The Yearbook: Reflections on School during the COVID-19 Pandemic." This special collaborative project will highlight stories from diverse viewpoints on the school experience during the pandemic. Using photography and first-person accounts to capture memories and perspectives, The Yearbook will offer an intimate look into the journey of students, educators, families and community partners navigating a school year like no other. To learn more and submit your story, please visit:

15 0

Would you walk miles for internet access?

We asked @charmeckschools principals and teachers to reflect on stories of students who’ve been impacted by our Connect for Tech initiative. In this #principalperspective, @sedgefieldspartans principal Sheena Miracle shares the story of a student whose connectivity experience was a true journey:

Saturday, August 15, a simple request received: "Directora, un punto de acceso por favor." Principal, one hotspot please. This message came from a 6th grade student who was advocating for his education and an opportunity to connect to school. On this day he joined a list of 25 students at our school waiting for that opportunity.

The week prior, a counselor and I had conducted home visits to his neighborhood. This young man comes from one of the most challenged areas of the Charlotte’s Center City. However, at only 11 years old, he understood how to advocate for himself. With the connections he made with his new school team that day, he also knew that he could request help.

At the start of the school year, he did not have wifi access. Unable to connect in his home, he walked over two miles—in the August heat—to a location where he could participate in a portion of his classes through synchronous (live video) learning. He completed this journey for several days…until he was able to obtain a CMS hotspot.

When he arrived in the pickup line for his hotspot, the excitement from his family and school staff was immeasurable. He now had access: to the internet, to school, to his future.

Since that day, this young man has not missed a beat. We celebrate the success he’s had in this remote learning environment. The CMS Foundation has allowed children with this resilience, determination and dedication to participate in school on a daily basis. For this we are grateful. As we await the day we return to in-person learning, we cannot wait to surround him with even more support. We will be able to have a greater impact on building his confidence and nurturing his ambition. This opportunity and his growth and development will change the greater community.

*More perspectives to come*

26 2

"Now I can do Zoom with my teachers anytime during the day to get help with my hard assignments. People have helped me and now I want to see how I can help other people."  
Like many students in our community, Wendy (5th grade) & Kevin (kindergarten) were having issues staying connected with their teachers because of unreliable internet access at home. But after a special mobile hotspot delivery made by school staff, they haven’t missed a minute of learning with their teachers and classmates. Grateful for the support, they’re already thinking about how they can pay it forward.
#Thankful for everyone who came together to Connect for Tech and help us close the connectivity gap for our students!

53 2