Short-staffed, overworked, low wages. Many educators and families are impacted from the state’s decades long neglect.
In the few days since it’s launch, the T.R.U.E portal has received over 150 comments from educators, students and parents across the state.
Testimonials ranging from teacher assistants filling in for bus drivers, no doors in classrooms to teachers overworking past school hours. An educator having to teach 27 students packed into a dirty little trailer to schools having one guidance counselor for upwards of 800 students. These are just a few of the reports citing the real problems in our classrooms.
The responses are startling, but reflect the impact of the Republican-led legislation choosing to ignore public school funding and investing in school personnel.
“I purchase my own supplies yearly and have since around 2010. We haven’t had enough textbooks for my senior English students since 2005,” said a public school teacher. “One of the buildings on my campus is currently condemned. We went one whole year with broken AC in the gym area and our AC is still messed up (our building is over 50 years old)”.
“In Granville County teacher assistants have to drive school buses. Teacher Assistance in Granville County need a raise. Bus Drivers in Granville County need to have a raise,” said a public school teacher.
“I don’t have a sink. I don’t have a storage closet, cabinets, or countertops. I have made a makeshift storage room. I don’t have a kiln to fire clay in my room. I have made friends with the HVAC guys because they are in my room constantly because the unit breaks. Only so many band aid fixes will hold,” said an art teacher. “3rd-5th graders don’t have doors in their classrooms, they operate in a “pod” so there is open air into 4 shared classroom spaces. Very unsafe situation during a lockdown. We even had a class on how to use a drop cord to tie the door shut in case of a real threat”.
“Low teacher wages and a lack of incentives along with too many extraneous responsibilities make North Carolina a terrible place to teach and therefore many of my children’s classes are going without instructors this year. My 12th grader has two classes without teachers and my 9th grader has one. This is completely unacceptable,” stated a public school parent.
“I am a school nurse and I’m leaving the school system because I cannot afford to live in my city and work for their school system,” stated a public school nurse.
“My children’s teachers and administrators have consistently gone above and beyond to keep families informed and students safe while delivering consistent, high quality education,” stated a public school parent. “They have shown tremendous grace and patience under challenging and uncertain circumstances and worked hard to convey positivity and provide as normal a school experience as possible under the circumstances.”
As state budget talks continue, the complaints, concerns and demands from the 150+ parents, grandparents, students, and educators across the state paint a clear picture that ensuring our state fully funds education is not only a constitutional obligation, but a moral imperative and a basic right.