RALEIGH, NC - With yesterday’s release of the initial NC House budget proposal, the North Carolina Association of Educators is urging lawmakers to prioritize students and fund North Carolina’s future.
NCAE President Tamika Walker Kelly released the following statement in response to the House’s proposed budget:
“This budget takes several steps forward in meeting the needs of our public school children. In particular, it funds more teacher assistants and school health personnel, it provides resources to train tutors, and it lowers class sizes in fourth and fifth grades. These steps, in addition to salary increases for school employees, will help put more adults in our schools and in our classrooms — which has a major impact on student success."
"NCAE is also happy to see funding for master’s pay for teachers and paid parental leave for school employees. These are important steps in treating educators like the professionals that they are."
"We believe every child, regardless of their race, income or zip code deserves the best education and an opportunity to thrive. By this standard, this budget is a mixed bag. Unfortunately, there is no commitment to universal breakfast and lunch and the legislature continues to drain millions of tax dollars away from underfunded public schools in favor of private schools through its voucher program."
"NCAE is also concerned about education policy changes within the budget, such as reduced oversight for charter schools and expanding the voucher program, the creation of media review boards, and a Standard Course of Study Commission that could take the power to shape our children’s education out of the hands of professional educators and give it to political appointees."
"With a surplus in state revenue, now is the time to take big steps toward correcting the historic underfunding of our children’s education. NCAE is hopeful that we can work with state legislators and the governor to reach a budget compromise that meets the needs of our public school children without risking school accountability and keeping professional educators in charge of our education standards."