NC Teacher Rally Organizers Expect 'Sea Of Red' at Capitol Wednesday

NC Teacher Rally Organizers Expect 'Sea Of Red' at Capitol Wednesday

6:19am May 15, 2018
Ronda Mays, president of the Forsyth County NCAE, prepares for the rally by gathering signs for teachers to carry during the event in Raleigh. KERI BROWN/WFDD

Thousands of North Carolina teachers will converge on the legislative building in Raleigh Wednesday, May 16 to lobby state lawmakers for better working conditions. Many schools across the state will close due to their expected absences.

Nearly 40 districts have cancelled classes, including Guilford County Schools and Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools. Educators say they’re taking a personal day to attend the March for Students and Rally for Respect.

“We will paint Raleigh ‘Red with Ed’,” says Mark Jewell, president of the North Carolina Association of Educators, which is hosting the event. “We will gather at the state NCAE office and then march to the capital with our signs and voices.”

Organizers say they’ll also meet with state lawmakers about several issues, including better pay, more money for building improvements, and school safety.

“This day that we chose is the opening day for the short session for our legislators,” says Ronda Mays with the Forsyth County chapter of the NCAE. “We don’t know how long they will be in session but we do know one thing – they are going to be working on the budget and we do not want them to forget about our students. We do not want them to forget about our educators.”

State officials estimate the school closings will affect more than 900,000 students across the state. Many school districts say they will still have scheduled testing and provide meals at several sites. Childcare services will also be available in some communities.

*Follow WFDD's Keri Brown on Twitter @kerib_news

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