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Rockingham Superintendent calls revised education reform plan a ‘full-scale assault on public education’ (Audio)

Senate President Phil Berger‘s decision to include a controversial tax credit scholarship program in the latest version of his Excellent Public Schools Act earned him a less than stellar report card Monday from his own local school superintendent.

Dr. Rodney Shotwell, Superintendent of Rockingham County Schools, told the House Education Committee that the inclusion of Rep. Paul Stam’s voucher proposal in Senate Bill 795 could only be seen as a ‘full-scale assault on public education’:

“The addition of the tax credit for private schooling to this bill is only turning what had been a bill with some potential into something that should be adamantly opposed by everyone who cares about public schools,” said Dr. Shotwell.

He urged the House Committee to hold off on passing the sweeping reform bill in the final days of the short session, allowing for a fuller, more thoughtful discussion in 2013.

The committee adjourned Monday evening without taking a vote on S795. To hear Dr. Shotwell’s remarks, click below:

5 Comments


  1. […] Progressive Pulse blog post, NC Policy Watch, a project of the NC Justice Center, June 18, […]

  2. […] this provision becomes law in the next few days over the objections of experts like the school superintendent in Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger’s home county, North Carolina will be well down the road toward transforming its flawed but […]

  3. […] Let’s hope Sen. Berger reads them before he agrees to a final budget that includes what his own school superintendent calls a full out assault on public education. […]

  4. mercadeo

    June 19, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    “I know that others have called this tax credit scholarship an effort to take away from our public schools, but as a parent I see this program as a lifeline for my son’s future,” Oney told the panel.

  5. Ronald Price

    June 20, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    Public (Government) education funded by the taxpayer is a monopoly. Monopolies seldom serve the consumer well because it lacks the benefit of competition. I think one can understand a person who is employed by the “System” as being against competition. However after years of attacks on the academic freedom of teachers and students it is time for competition to be brought into the equation. Competition is good for the consumer, as it provides options for the parents, students, teachers and administrators and puts an end to the monopoly mentality of the “SYSTEM”. I commend the General Assembly and Senator Berger for taking this action to improve the public education system and provide options for all involved. I like most taxpayers want to see my taxes going to an education system that offers competition and options to everyone involved.

    The public education system as it exists today continues an ongoing and growing assault on freedom and liberty in education.

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