Durham, N.C. — The Durham Public Schools Board of Education unanimously passed a resolution Thursday opposing the state education budget passed in July by the General Assembly.
Citing a commitment to "academic excellence, technological innovations, social responsibility and life-long learning," the board laid out four reasons why the 2013-15 state budget hurts the education system in North Carolina.
School system leaders said the budget limits educational opportunities for students by "eliminating funding for teachers, instructional support and teacher assistants."
They also questioned the budget's impact on the state's ability to attract and maintain new teachers and teachers who hold master's degrees. Under the state’s budget signed into law by Gov. Pat McCrory last month, North Carolina’s teachers received no raises.
"The most recently passed state budget hinders the Pre-K-12 preparation of students for a successful post-secondary transition into the workforce so that North Carolina might compete in the global economy," the board said in its resolution.
Other groups have also been critical of the budget in recent weeks. Several groups rallied outside McCrory's office Aug. 15, accusing him and Republican legislative leaders of misleading the public about the budget.
Peggy Raymes, principal at Margaret Willis Elementary School in Cumberland County, recently penned a letter to McCrory questioning the raises given to young staffers who worked on McCrory's campaign.
Raymes posted the letter to McCrory on NC Policy Watch – a website maintained by the progressive, nonprofit North Carolina Justice Center – and it went viral.
McCrory has responded to complaints about the budget several times in the last month, often pointing to Medicaid cost overruns as the reason why teachers won't receive a pay increase.