More than 94 percent of respondents to a survey conducted by researchers at UNC-Wilmington said that they felt public education in North Carolina is headed in the wrong direction and overwhelmingly trusted teachers and administrators — not lawmakers — to make educational decisions for the state’s public schools.
Residents of North Carolina, 80 percent of which were parents with children in public schools, were surveyed about the quality and direction of education in the state and asked to react to recent legislative decisions passed by the General Assembly, including the removal of additional funding for teachers who earn advanced degrees, implementation of a voucher program, removal of class size limits, and the abolishment of tenure, among others.
- More than 85 percent of respondents disagreed with the state’s decision to provide low-income families with private school vouchers.
- Ninety-six percent of participants disagreed with the removal of additional pay for teachers earning a master’s degree in education.
- More than 76 percent of respondents disagreed with the elimination of teacher tenure.
- Ninety-six percent of participants disagreed with the removal of class size caps.
- Ninety-five percent of respondents disagreed with the decision to not increase teacher salaries in 2013 for the fourth time in five years.
Participants were also given the chance to respond to the survey in their own words. Below are a few of those comments:
“These laws will not improve NC education, but destroy it!”
“I am just very disappointed in the direction NC education is headed. I hope to find work in another state that values children and education. NC is no longer that state.”
“I am shocked, angered and saddened by the direction of education in this state, all at the hands of the current legislature and governor. Because of these devastating changes, and in spite of a strong desire to teach again, I will not likely re-enter the profession.”
“My family is very concerned about the direction in which the 2013 NC State Legislature seems to be taking our public education system. We have two children enrolled in public schools now, and have witnessed firsthand the exodus of quality teachers and the swelling of class sizes. At all levels, we will be paying attention to candidates’ attitudes, statements, and actions regarding this issue and will vote accordingly.”