Commentary, News

As teachers gather in Raleigh, Council of Churches lends support by forming “Faith Leaders for NC Children”

The movement to support today’s mass education rally in Raleigh and its goal of reversing a decade of regressive public education policy continues to grow rapidly. This is from the good people at the NC Council of Churches:

Faith Leaders for North Carolina Children (FLFNCC)

Ready to sign up and have your faith community or organization join FLFNCC? Click here to fill out a quick form and we will be in touch with you shortly.

The NC Council of Churches has a long history of supporting public education and recently recommitted to both support and advocacy for the state system of public schools. (See statement by clicking here)

This year, we join the North Carolina Association of Educators and other public school advocates in broadly advocating for five things from our elected leaders:

  1. Significant investment in per-pupil spending (just over $11,000/student) so our students have the resources to be successful.
  2. A multi-year professional pay plan for educators, education support professionals, administrators and all other school personnel. This plan must include restoration of compensation for advanced degrees and longevity. The plan must also stop the flat-lining of experienced educator’s pay.
  3. Investment in the health and well-being of our students with an education that focuses on the whole child, making each school a model that promotes resilience and improves the overall health of our communities.
  4. Passage of a Statewide School Construction Bond to fix our crumbling schools and large class sizes.
  5. Prioritize public education by aligning our tax code with our economic capacity.

To articulate and achieve these goals, the NC Council of Churches has created Faith Leaders for NC Children. This is a coordinated group of ministers, pastors, rabbis, and other leaders in faith communities who are willing to help educate the broader public about educational issues and to use their leadership positions in communities across our state to advocate for public schools.  FLFNCC seeks to build a deep and wide legion of supporters who are willing and able to act when the need arises. Members will commit to contacting elected officials when asked to take a stand on issues related to public education that fit into the scope outlined above.

In addition to being advocates, FLFNCC seeks to create a system of partnerships for congregations and schools systems that incorporates existing mission work with advocacy.  The Council will use its network and reputation to partner with superintendents and school boards to clear the way for schools and faith groups to form community partnerships.  FLFNCC Members agree to have their names added to the public members list and agree to the terms of membership, which include not using the opportunity to proselytize or form prayer groups in public schools.

Please join us by signing up here.

Our partners:  North Carolina Association of Educators, Public Schools First NC

PLEASE JOIN the Council at 1 p.m. on May 16 at First Baptist Church (99 North Salisbury Street, Raleigh) for a teach-in on advocating for and supporting our public schools. Unfortunately, parking will not be available at the church that day. Click here for more event information.

WHAT IS HAPPENING?  Teachers, parents, community leaders, religious leaders, and advocates for public education will gather on May 16 in Raleigh to welcome our state legislators and to advocate on behalf of our public schools, the teachers and staff who serve in them, and the students whom they serve. CLICK HERE for links to partner organizations, advocacy information,  and news stories.

The North Carolina Council of Churches asks churches across North Carolina make a special effort to affirm and support this day of advocacy. CLICK HERE to read our statement on Public Education.

WHAT CAN WE DO?

AFFIRM TEACHERS’ ADVOCACY:  CLICK HERE for suggestions about how to affirm and encourage teachers who are considering spending the day in Raleigh rather than in their classrooms.

IF SCHOOLS ARE STAYING OPEN:  CLICK HERE for suggestions about how to support the May 16 Day of Advocacy in counties where the schools are not closing.

IF SCHOOLS ARE CLOSING:  CLICK HERE for suggestions about how to support the May 16 Day of Advocacy in counties where the schools will close or are likely to close.  (Those decisions have not been finalized. We expect many of the Triangle school districts to close).

ADVOCATE:  CLICK HERE for advocacy resources.

SHOW UP:  CLICK HERE for details about May 16.  Keep coming back. These details will be updated.  RSVP HERE.

STAY IN TOUCH – with us AND with your community:   Please do these things to help us form a cohesive witness:

  • Email us and tell us what you have done with these resources, and how it is working:  info@ncchurches.org
  • Post on our Facebook page as a comment to posts about the May 16 Day of Advocacy.  Tell us what you have done with these resources and how it is working. And share and repost!  If you are a hashtag kind of person, use #itspersonal #may16 #red4ed #dae #ncae #ncteachersunited #getready #makeithappen #inthistogether
  • Retweet what we and our partner organizations are tweeting.  Use the hashtags! And tell what your church is doing locally.
  • Download this prayer for our public schools handout and use it to prepare spiritually for the day of advocacy.

DOWNLOAD: All of the information in this support plan is available HERE to download as a printable PDF.

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