Once again, public school teachers are taking a stand for education and against irresponsible, top-heavy tax cuts that deprive states of the revenue they need to sufficiently fund public services, including education. "And that's what they got".
According to the National Education Association, North Carolina's teachers ranked 39th in average teacher pay previous year, with an average salary of $49,970.
Berger also blamed "politically motivated rhetoric and misinformation" for criticism of lawmakers' public school decisions.
Since then, education advocates say state lawmakers have not done enough to make up for years in which they gave no raises or to account for inflation.
"I think they've pretty much filled every corner of the chamber, " Lt. Gov Dan Forest said.
Some lawmakers have criticized teachers for their one-day rally.
When asked about the impact the walkout and school closing could have on students and families, particularly for low-income ones, Nash said it would be hard to provide a comment due to the number of families in the CHCCS district.
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Following on the heels of a successful 9-day strike by West Virginia teachers, education protests in Oklahoma and Kentucky, and teacher walkouts in Arizona and Colorado, thousands of North Carolina teachers are saying they're fed up as well. "We have voted, we have marched, we have rallied..."
Rob Jackson, superintendent of the Edenton-Chowan Public Schools, didn't say how many teachers have asked for leave on Wednesday, but his district plans to remain open that day.
"We would just like to collectively recognize and thank all the teachers from around the state who traveled to be with us", Moore said.
"What do we want?"
More than three dozen school districts - from the 10 largest to numerous smaller districts in rural areas - that together educate more than two-thirds of the state's 1.5 million public school students are closed Wednesday. In fact, she says her take home pay has actually gone down.
The group laid out a list of demands before the protest, calling on the state to meet the national averages in per-student spending and teacher pay within four years. "We're looking at how all of our colleagues in these other states are making some real material wins for their students as well".
Thousands of teachers have gathered in front of the North Carolina Legislative Building where the route of their march ends.
A Durham teacher accused the rally's organizers of using students as "pawns" to push their agenda. It ranks 39th in the nation, according to the NEA report. "If we are short substitute teachers, we will implement a substitute teacher plan at the needed building or buildings - which occurs on days we are short substitute teachers throughout the year". Teachers have also slammed lawmakers for bypassing raises for the state's most experienced educators.
Over the past several months, hundreds of thousands of teachers and support staff have engaged in statewide walkouts in West Virginia, Oklahoma and Arizona, and other strikes and protests in Kentucky, Colorado, New Jersey and many other states, plus the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico.