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“When Jim Hunt left office (Jan 2001), teacher pay in North Carolina had reached the national average. The state jumped from 43rd to the top twenty. The average SAT scores rose 40 points, faster than any other state, and NC’s ranking among states rose from 48th to 38th. The Nat. Ed. Goals Panel formed by GWH Bush in 1990 said in 1998 that NC had made more progress in education during that decade than any other state. Ed Week newspaper rated NC one of the top twelve states overall in education. Moving into the 21st century, NC and Jim Hunt were hailed nationally for what was happening in the public schools.” – Gary Pearce


Click Here to Read Our Considerations for the Re-Opening of Schools

Provide a Strong Foundation for All Schools

  • Increase per-pupil expenditures to national average to ensure that classrooms across the state have the resources they need  

  • Prioritize funding of traditional public schools to ensure that they remain the best alternative

  • Secure a living wage for all school personnel 

  • Expand equitable access to digital resources


Expand Equity throughout All School Districts

  • Help districts address the issues of racism and bias that are systemic in public schools through examining how discipline practices and curriculum negatively impact children and implementing positive approaches like restorative justice 

  • Prioritize recruitment of educators of color, as research shows that a diverse teacher workforce benefits students in many ways

  • Ensure equitable access to rigorous coursework such as AP classes and other enrichment opportunities

  • Create a system of evaluating schools that is fair and doesn’t stigmatize children based on their levels of poverty like the current A-F school report card system


Provide a Strong Pathway for All Children

  • Expand access to early childhood education with a goal of providing Universal Pre-K in the next five years

  • Reduce class sizes with adequate funding so other learning opportunities aren’t negatively impacted

  • Increase number of instructional teaching assistants to ensure there is one teaching assistant in every K-3 class and one in every two classes for grades 4 and 5

  • Identify and systematically share innovative instructional approaches to early grades literacy

  • Prioritize funding for a curriculum that meets the needs of the whole child including the arts, music, media studies, health and P.E.  

  • Redesign our state assessment system so that it measures the skills we most want students to have and yields data that truly informs instruction and improves learning outcomes

  • Strengthen partnerships between the Department of Public Instruction and UNC Colleges of Teacher Education to ensure teacher prep programs are informed by K-12 school needs and improve the teacher pipeline 


Provide a safe and healthy school environment

  • Provide sufficient personnel to support the social and emotional needs of students; work to increase the numbers of school counselors, school nurses, school psychologists, and school social workers to the nationally recommended ratios.

  • Expand wrap-around services for students and families, including high-quality after-school programs, universal breakfast and support for student health needs through things like dental and vision screenings 

  • Increase training of educators and school staff in trauma-informed care to ensure that schools provide a healthy and supportive environment and build resilience in children

Create Statewide Culture of Respect for All Educators

  • Increase teacher pay to the national average

  • Provide additional compensation for teachers who earn advanced degrees

  • Ensure benefits package that attracts and retains outstanding educators, including restoration of retiree health benefits

  • Provide high quality professional development for all educators including support personnel

  • Ensure due process career protections for all school personnel 

  • Involve educators in the decision-making process for policies and programs that impact their students

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