North Carolina: ESL in the News
State of North Carolina cannot cut and run from
the results by reducing standards and deleting the assessments
because they do not bring good news.
state has abandoned its constitutional commitment to provide
all North Carolina children with a sound, basic education,
say lawyers for low-income school districts, who cite years
of budget reductions, jettisoned programs and tens of thousands
of low-scoring students.
a new filing, attorneys in a landmark school quality lawsuit
call for a hearing in August and a detailed plan from the
state, with timetables, for complying with the basic education
mandate from two previous Supreme Court rulings. They say
North Carolina has discarded many of the planned remedies
to the problem, leaving 800,000 poor students 56
percent of all school children at risk of academic
Meanwhile, Wake County Superior Court Judge Howard E. Manning
Jr., who is overseeing the case, issued a stinging warning:
The children of North Carolina have a constitutional
right to a sound basic education and the adults who are
paid and charged with the responsibility of providing that
education in every school and classroom have no valid right
to cover up the results of their failure to provide that
opportunity, parents and the public included.
Charter Schools Approved for 2015
eleven of the 71 North Carolina charter-school applicants
who filed to open independent public schools in 2015 got
the go-ahead from a May screening board review, a significant
drop from the previous year.
The state Board of Education has the final say on which
private nonprofit boards will be authorized to get public
money, but that board generally follows the advisory board's
"We really went out of our way to make sure that we
were recommending schools that could take off and do well,"
said advisory board member Cheryl Turner, director of Sugar
Creek Charter School in Charlotte. "There are some
very innovative schools coming."
But Eddie Goodall, a Union County charter-school advocate
and former state senator, says the board went too far in
"We are all kind of in a daze at the proclivity for
saying 'no' from this charter board," said Goodall,
president of the N.C. Public Charter Schools Association.
Veteran Teachers Get No Raise Under McCrory Plan
1,500 veteran teachers wouldn't see any pay raise under
a plan Gov. Pat McCrory has proposed in his 2014-15 budget,
according to the North Carolina Association of Educators.
NCAE officials said they discovered that teachers with 37
years or more in the classroom would get no raise under
the proposal because they have topped out on the salary
scale.Eric Guckian, Governor McCrory's Senior Advisor on
Education, said the most experienced teachers would have
an excellent opportunity to earn more under the plan - the
Career Pathways for Teachers - the governor announced a
few short weeks ago.
US Department of Education Cites NC as Leader in Reform
Through Race To The Top
Carolina is considered a national leader in education reform
based on the work it has done in public education via the
Race to the Top grant, according to the US Department of
Education third-year report released in March.
In it, U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan named North
Carolina as, once again, one of the top states making progress
in serving students, supporting teachers and bolstering
technology in its remodeling efforts. He stated: "North
Carolina has made key steps in implementing its plans, developing
great teachers and leaders, and in improving students' outcomes.
As North Carolina completes the third year of implementing
its Race to the Top grant, it has continued to demonstrate
leadership in education reform."
The state's implementation of the Common Core State Standards
was made possible in large part by Race to the Top funds.
Read news release
Common Core to Cost NC Millions
Teachers and administrators across the state have been spending
enormous amounts of time and money to implement the Common
Core State Standards, which North Carolina adopted in 2010.
But now the state is poised to replace the standards as
a growing opposition movement to the CCSS has pushed lawmakers
toward abandoning them in favor of home-grown alternatives
even though the state has already spent millions
of dollars and resources on the Common Cores implementation.
state won a Race to the Top grant worth approximately $400
million and a good chunk of that money has been used
for Common Core. The state has spent nearly $72 million
of the RTTT grant on transitioning to the new state standards,
which includes CCSS, and an additional $68 million on building
local districts technological capacity to deliver
on the new standards.
Outside of Race to the Top funds, local school districts
have also spent their own money on CCSS implementation
and its difficult to even put a figure on that cost.
Youth Face Discrimination in North Carolina Districts, Advocates
A group of advocates today announced their effort to prod
federal civil rights officials to investigate two North
Carolina districts for either denying or making it difficult
for immigrant students to enroll in their schools.
The complaint-against the Buncombe County and Union County
school districts-was filed on behalf of two immigrant youth
yesterday with the U.S. Department of Justice's civil rights
division by the Southern Poverty Law Center, Legal Services
of Southern Piedmont, North Carolina Justice Center, and
the Southern Coalition for Social Justice. The two students
were unaccompanied minors who entered the United States
illegally without an adult to care for them.
. . .
Read to Achieve a Path to Failure for NC
North Carolina, this has been the worst third-grade year
in memory for teachers, students and families. The General
Assemblys requirement that third-graders must pass
the End of Grade reading exam in order to be promoted has
drained countless third-grade classes of the excitement
that comes with reading and learning and turned the last
months of third grade into a slog of worksheets, test practice
the end of the school year, the Read to Achieve legislation
will force many North Carolina third-graders to repeat the
grade, even though retention is enormously expensive and
has been shown to harm students more often than it helps
them. Janna Siegel Robertson, professor of education at
UNC-Wilmington and co-coordinator of the UNCW Dropout Prevention
Coalition maintains that for the well-being of North Carolinas
children, we need to demand that our representatives either
scrap or profoundly overhaul Read to Achieve.