RALEIGH– The North Carolina Association of Educators (NCAE) welcomes lawmakers back to Raleigh and is ready for the opportunity to work with members of the House and Senate to ensure the state’s students and public schools are successful.

Currently, North Carolina ranks 39th in per-pupil funding, more than $2,300 per student behind the national average, and ranks 37th in average teacher pay, more than $9,600 behind the national average. It’s time for much-needed change, said NCAE President Mark Jewell.

“Our students deserve every opportunity to be successful. North Carolina’s voters made it clear last November that public education is a top priority. What students need are resources, professionally compensated educators, and learning environments that are safe, healthy places in which they can flourish.”

NCAE recently released its 2019 Legislative Priorities, which are geared toward making public schools great. The Association strongly urges lawmakers to consider these priorities: boost per-pupil funding to the national average in four years, invest in health and well-being of students, implement a multiyear professional compensation and benefits plan for all educators, pass a $1.9 billion statewide school construction bond, and eliminate corporate tax cuts until per-pupil spending and teacher pay reach the national average.

A vital component to advancing the Association’s priorities as it advocates for students is to engage public school educators, parents, and community supporters through its new campaign “Strong Students. Strong Schools. Strong Communities.” The campaign focuses on connecting these groups in an effort to learn and collectively develop a plan to win the public schools our students deserve.

This is the first time since 2013 that the supermajority is not in control of both chambers, and NCAE looks forward to working with Governor Cooper to move their legislative agenda forward.

NCAE is the state’s largest education advocacy organization for public school employees, and represents active, retired and student members.

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