Education reporter Lindsay Wagner of NC Policy Watch offers an excellent analysis of the impact of the biennial budget on public education. A key fact overlooked by some legislators who believe we are spending more on public education in the new budget:
“…the 2014 fiscal year budget will spend $500 million less than the 2008 inflation-adjusted budget.”
“The 2013-15 biennial budget introduces a raft of spending cuts to public schools that will result in no raises for teachers, larger class sizes, fewer teacher assistants, little support for instructional supplies or professional development, and what could amount to the dismantling of the North Carolina Teaching Fellows program. Teachers can also say goodbye to tenure and supplemental pay for advanced degrees.
As public education tries to provide high quality educational services for all of its students in the face of these severe cuts, lawmakers have simultaneously introduced a ‘way out’ for those who can take advantage: school vouchers.
Is this the beginning of the end for public education in North Carolina?”