Editorial: No excuses! Back Leandro implementation now
Tuesday, June 23, 2020 -- In the coming days Superior Court Judge David Lee will indicate his view on the filed Leandro implementation plan - either signing off or modifying it. He's already indicated his support for much of what is in the proposal that carries a $427 million price tag. That is a small down payment for an eight-year commitment to improve opportunities for the state's school students - from early childhood programs through high school graduation. Remember, this is an obligation and NOT an option.Posted — Updated
It is easy to find excuses and avoid doing the right thing:
- “We don’t have the money.”
- “We ARE NOT going to raise taxes.”
- “We are just throwing money at the problem.”
- “That’s just judicial activism.”
- “We’re already doing that.”
- “It won’t make a difference.”
- “Judges can’t tell us what to do."
- "They don’t pass the budget.”
- “That’s not our problem to solve.”
Any missing? Rest assured, if those words haven’t already been uttered by state legislative leaders looking to dodge dealing with the inevitable order of recommendations headed their way via the latest Leandro case ruling, they will be soon.
But they know the truth. They are just swerving away from the obvious. It IS the right thing to do.
That is a small down payment for an eight-year commitment to improve opportunities for the state’s school students – from early childhood programs through high school graduation. Remember, this is an obligation and NOT an option.
The plan calls for $427 million in new state education funding this year as the first phase of an eight-year plan. Most of the new money this year would go to: increase funding for at-risk students; expand early childhood education programs; increase opportunities for teacher training along with skills advancement; and improve teacher pay.
These bills – and the state constitutional obligation they are aimed at fulfilling, deserve to be heard and voted upon. The legislature’s education and appropriations-education committees should hold hearings on these bills and the court-approved Leandro plan.
North Carolinians deserve to hear about the right of their children to receive a quality education. They need to know what needs to be done to accomplish it.
Most significantly, they deserve to have their legislators held accountable for either delivering on our Constitution’s promise or deny it.
Every legislator seeking re-election needs to be on the record – by how they cast their vote – as to where they stand.
Do they support the rights granted by our State Constitution and will they work to make sure they are not denied? Will they stand up and be counted as supporting the courts’ Leandro decision and implementation?
Or are they making excuses?
We’ll see you at the polls.
Copyright 2023 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.