RALEIGH, NC – Today, Governor Roy Cooper declared that public education in North Carolina is in a state of emergency. In response, Tamika Walker Kelly, president of the North Carolina Association of Educators, released the following statement:
“Investing in our public schools is the best way to advance student outcomes and ensure every child in North Carolina has the tools they need to succeed. Governor Cooper’s address today highlighted many of the key issues standing in the way of ensuring every child receives the education they deserve, regardless of who they are or where they live.
“Rather than increasing funding for voucher programs that will invest more public funds into private schools, NCAE members are advocating at the state and local level to ensure North Carolina’s final budget reflects the value of public education and keeps public funding in public schools. That means a budget that includes proposals from both the House and Senate to increase funding for school health personnel and increase school safety. We need a budget that resets school meal debt so every student has access to healthy meals, and prioritizes recruitment and retention of teachers so that every student has the ability to learn from quality and experienced educators in their classrooms.
“The majority of North Carolinians want strong, successful public schools for our families and our communities. Together, we can work across lines of difference to ensure our public schools meet the needs of every student, prepare them for the future, and make our state a better place to live.”