Today, Progress NC Action launched the True Reporting of Underfunding Education (T.R.U.E.) Portal, a website for parents, educators, and community leaders to submit testimonies of challenges facing our cash-strapped schools.
For years, the Republican-led legislature has systematically violated the constitutional rights of children across the state by failing to provide a sound basic education as enshrined in the infamous state Supreme Court ruling in Leandro v. State.
- Just recently, a state superior court judge ordered legislators to adequately fund education according to the terms of the Leandro plan by mid-October.
- Despite the court order, proposed education budgets from both the House and Senate come nowhere close to meeting the state’s obligation to provide a sound basic education for all students.
While schools continue to receive lackluster funding, teachers go without raises, and districts face massive bus driver shortages, Republican Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson led an unfounded witch-hunt to uncover evidence of “indoctrination” happening in North Carolina schools. Robinson’s task force, the Fairness and Accountability in the Classroom for Teachers and Students (F.A.C.T.S.) launched an online portal to collect evidence of teacher misconduct in the classroom.
The result was a 250-plus page report that showed no signs of widespread indoctrination in North Carolina schools — with over two-thirds of the submissions having nothing to do with the K-12 North Carolina curriculum. Nearly a third of submissions call out Robinson’s dedication to a political witch hunt over addressing the real issues facing students and educators across the state.
Here are just a few of them:
- Comment #452: “How about making it so all children have access to quality education and the resources needed to be successful rather than lambast teachers trying to include people from ALL WALKS OF LIFE in their curricula?”
- Comment #63: “I send my daughter to NC Public Schools in hopes that she will be taught a genuine reflection of her state and nation’s history, and not a whitewashed/glossed over approximation that seeks to protect those in the seats of power from experiencing any discomfort.”
- Comment #285: “I would much prefer that the F.A.C.T.S. task force spend their time spotlighting teachers who are tirelessly working to go above and beyond to educate their students.”
- Comment #26: “NC has amazing teachers! Your task force should spend your time helping children and schools, like teachers do”.
In case Republican lawmakers and Lt. Gov. Robinson are unaware — bus driver shortages, crumbling buildings, lack of supplies, underpaid educators — these are the real problems in our schools.
Ultimately, the true fact is that our schools are severely underfunded.
Instead of using false outrage as a scapegoat to distract us from their failures, NC GOP lawmakers should be focusing on ensuring our classrooms are safe, helping our students get back on track and ensuring that our educators, who have gone through a year of unimaginable challenges, are given a decent living wage.
It’s time for NC lawmakers to listen to the concerns of families, educators and students, rather than push harmful measures and controversies, like Lt. Gov. Robinson’s task force, for their own political gain.
Through Progress NC Action’s True Reporting of Underfunding Education (T.R.U.E.) Portal, we hope to help strengthen and amplify the voices of parents, students and educators across our state — giving space to call attention to the concerns, demands and desires to improve our state’s public schools that too often, the Republican-led legislature chooses to ignore.