Creating Some New ABC's for North Carolina's Public Schools
North Carolina’s Common Core education standards may be short-lived.
During the last week of June in Raleigh, North Carolina state House legislators pushed to repeal the Common Core education standards with a vote of 74-40. The Senate also has a similar bill to repeal the state’s latest public education framework. Rodney Ellis is the President of the North Carolina Association of Educators. He believes dumping Common Core is a mistake. “It’s a step in the wrong direction to eliminate Common Core," says Ellis. "Primarily because they don’t have anything set in place if they were to eliminate it and besides that the knock on Common Core has not been so much on what it entails but on how it has been implemented.” Ellis says most teachers he’s spoken to like the Common Core standards but they want the state to invest in more professional development to help them teach the methods. There are still differences between the state House and Senate versions. A conference committee made up of representatives from both chambers is close to creating a bill both sides can agree upon. Meanwhile, Ellis is attending a national education conference in Denver, Colorado. He says he and North Carolina’s public school teachers are getting support from educators nationwide even as legislators move to change the landscape of education in the state through such programs as charter-school vouchers. “The attempt to divert funding to other alternative education options, it’s unethical, it’s unconstitutional. So NCAE is going to continue to stand up for public education and for students in public school and make sure every student has an opportunity to receive a quality education.” Ellis says the group is optimistic with Governor Pat McCrory’s new education bill. Some of its provisions include all teachers getting a 5 percent raise, saving about 6,000 teaching assistant jobs and protecting teacher status rights.