· The goal of the Public Education Walk-In Day is not to infringe upon the rights of teachers to protest, but rather to show teachers that we stand in support of them and public education; we are a united front working toward the same goal, keeping children as our top priority.
· Our students come first. We want to ensure that we keep quality teachers in our classrooms, and that means ensuring that our teachers are equipped with the resources they need to help children be successful and making sure our teachers are fairly compensated and trained for the important work they do.
· On average, North Carolina teachers make far less than their counterparts in other states. Currently, North Carolina teacher pay ranks 46th lowest in the United States. The year before, North Carolina teacher pay ranked 41st. Despite stagnant pay, dependent healthcare costs, the cost of other fringe benefits, and the overall cost of living have increased. Many teachers and school support personnel work additional jobs during the school year and the summer. To truly put kids first, we need to pay teachers fair wages and ensure they have adequate time to plan and prepare instead of working second jobs to make ends meet.
· Our schools have lost nearly $12 million in state funding in the last six years. This is an extremely tough pill to swallow when you also factor in an accountability model that seems that it will unjustly label public schools using an A-F grading system, a $10 million private school voucher program that uses taxpayer money, and the elimination of many teaching and support positions. Much of the recent public education policy and legislation does not put kids first.
· We feel that one of the best ways we can show our teachers and other staff members—as well as our students— that we stand united in support of them is by inviting our parents and community into our schools and classrooms—not only to the see outstanding work our educators are doing, but also to see firsthand the challenges schools face.
· Help us put kids first. Make sure you know exactly what’s going on in public schools and in your local and state government. Tell your elected officials that failed policies, uncompetitive wages, fewer dollars that actually reach local schools, and other cuts to public schools are harmful not only to teachers, but also to children and the future of our communities and state.