with Eric Guckian, Gov. McCrory's Senion Education Advisor
you outline briefly Gov. McCrory's top priorities for strengthening
K-12 education in North Carolina?
McCrory recently announced Career Pathways for Teachers, his
comprehensive, long-term framework for K-12 education in North
Carolina. This framework is focused on ensuring that great
teachers are teaching in every classroom in North Carolina.
This Career Pathways for Teachers plan will focus on Experience
- Performance - Hard-to-Staff Schools - Market based subjects
- and Leadership when determining salaries.
McCrory's budget recommendations also include raises for all
teachers. Teachers in the first seven years of their career
will receive an average of 7% increase, teachers with 8-12
years of experience will receive increases ranging from 2.8
to 4.3 percent, and teachers in steps 13-36 will average a
pay hike of 2 percent.
McCrory also recently revealed the proposed budget and legislative
priorities for the current Short Legislative session. First
among those priorities for K-12 students and teachers is the
Career Pathways Fund, which will provide funds for support
and implementation for up to sixteen pilot districts to develop
local Career Pathways models that will provide additional
compensation to teachers who assume leadership roles and take
on additional opportunities within their schools. Additional
items included in the budget are supplements for teachers
who receive advanced degrees in the subject they are teaching,
in-state tuition for veterans, additional funding for Pre-K
slots, textbooks, and our most high-need subject areas in
the community college system.
McCrory's K-12 proposal is focused on teachers as a means
to strengthen student learning for ALL students in North Carolina.
Recognizing that teachers are the number one factor in a student's
academic achievement, it is crucial that we invest in our
educators as our greatest resource to ensure student success.
current budget proposal includes a new plan for teacher compensation
and other investments in education. What is this new plan? How
likely is it that most teachers will be supportive of this initiative?
Will they find that it is enough?
Wednesday, May 7, Governor McCrory introduced a comprehensive
plan for K-12 education across our state. For too long, North
Carolina has underinvested in its teachers as we worked to
endure one of the toughest economic recessions in generations.
Governor McCrory's K-12 proposal responds to that trend in
three ways: by implementing modest raises in the short-term,
supporting a more robust base Professional Pay Scale in the
long term, and advancing a Career Pathways for Teachers framework
that will empower teachers to determine their own financial
future while at the same time giving local school districts
the flexibility to address the most pressing needs of their
students and community. Instituting this long-term plan to
pay and reward teachers will be one of Governor McCrory's
primary goals in the short session and moving forward.
basis of this proposal is the Professional Pay Scale (PPS),
which significantly raises the salaries of all teachers in
the state and streamlines our compensation system to allow
teachers to earn more money earlier in their careers. Beyond
this, the Career Pathways model will allow educators to earn
raises in addition to their base compensation for locally-determined
leadership roles, working in high-need subjects and schools,
and pursuing opportunities for continuous improvement.
legislative committee has recently recommended replacing the
Common Core State Standards with state education standards.
How likely is this to happen and what is Gov. McCrory's stance
on this issue? What about the millions that have already been
spent on implementing the Common Core?
is critically important that our students are able to compete
in today's global economy, so we must maintain a high bar
for their education. To this end, Governor McCrory is committed
to supporting high academic standards for all North Carolina
students. We will support our legislature and the State Board
of Education in studying this issue to ensure that the standards
in place for North Carolina students are rigorous and strong.
Any changes will be made through a clear, responsible process.
a year ago you called for an aggressive charter school environment.
Yet fewer charter schools have been approved for 2015 by a preliminary
screening board: only eleven out of 71 applicants. Do you see
reluctance to approve charter schools as a trend or a temporary
order for the school choice movement to be successful, our
charter schools must be held accountable for providing a high
quality education to all students. Earlier this year, Governor
McCrory personally called upon our Charter Advisory Board
to hold a high bar for our charters. Our Charter Advisory
Board is made up of current and former charter school leaders
with a proven track record of success, and we trust them to
do this important work and make decisions based on what is
best for our students. Through the Charter Advisory Board,
it has been extremely important to emphasize quality and best
practices from proven models that have had proven success.
For example, PAVE and KIPP Durham were amongst the round of
recent charter school applications that have been approved
by the State Board of Education to begin accepting students
in the 2015-016 school year. PAVE, coming to Southeast Raleigh,
provides its students with a rigorous academic program, an
extended school day, and a community built on the school's
core values: Perseverance, Achievement, Vibrance, and Excellent
Character. KIPP Durham's framework will be modeled after the
success at KIPP Gaston, where 100% of their student graduate
and are prepared to attend the 4-year institutions that they
have been accepted to. While we would love to see a proliferation
of excellent educational opportunities here in North Carolina,
we believe that excellence is more important than abundance.
most of our readers are in the business of teaching English
language learners, we would like to know what the administration's
top priorities are for enhancing ESL education.
making policies for K-12 students, our administration strives
to reach all students across the state, regardless of circumstance,
because we believe that every child can succeed and should
have the resources to do so. Through Career Pathways for Teachers,
our best educators will be incentivized to teach in some of
our highest-need schools and amongst some of our highest-need
populations, with the hopes that their excellent instruction
and leadership will lead their students to increased academic
gains. ESL students are amongst our highest-need populations
in North Carolina public schools and we recognize that these
students often attend hard-to-staff schools. Through CPT,
we are able to provide teachers with experience and expertise
additional compensation to teach ESL students. In the proposed
budget, we hold funding for ESL students and services harmless
and ensure that ESL students continue to receive the services,
resources, and teachers that they need to succeed at a high
as you know, the education policies of the current administration
and the laws recently enacted by the governor and legislature
have caused extreme divisiveness between the administration
and public school teachers. The "Moral Monday" protests
attest to this. What do you think can be done to bridge the
schism between the two sides?
In order to move forward, the education conversation in North
Carolina needs to be refocused; away from adult concerns and
towards what's best for our students. It is clear to me that
the leaders on both sides of this debate have good intentions
and a shared end goal, but don't agree on the means to an
McCrory and our team have developed crucially strong relationships
with our teachers and our education community. Many leaders
across our state have been listening to our educators' concerns,
and will continue to listen, as our educators are our eyes
and ears in the classroom and can tell us what works and what
doesn't when it comes to classroom best practices and education
policy. This fall, the Governor's Teacher Advisory Committee
was reconvened to help us strengthen this relationship, and
our administration has worked with them every step of the
way in developing key education proposals, like Career Pathways
for Teachers. Likewise, many legislators have called upon
their local educators to provide feedback on and input into
proposed policies. Of course, there is always more to do in
order to strengthen this relationship, but we have a strong
foundation to build upon.