Public Education

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Wake County Public Education is Improving.

During my tenure as a Wake County Board Commissioner, we have:

  • Increased the Wake County school budget by 27% in three years, resulting in $100MM additional local dollars to the school system annually

  • Increased local teacher pay by 37%

  • Raised teacher supplements to give our teachers the highest pay in North Carolina

  • Become the first county in North Carolina to fund Smart Start early childhood development

  • Implemented a matching program to drive an additional $100,000 in private sector investment in the Smart Start program

  • Expanded early-childhood education seats for students experiencing homelessness

  • Reached a 7-year rolling agreement with the School Board for school construction and renovation, allowing parents, schools and taxpayers to plan ahead

  • Continued expansion of Wake Technical Community College through new campuses and online services, serving over 70,000 students annually

  • Increased funding to the United Arts Council Wheels on the Bus campaign, providing transportation for every elementary student to attend a local cultural event or institution

  • Funded United Arts Council Artists in Residence campaign, bringing professional musicians, writers, artists and performers as guest teachers in Wake County Schools

  • Funding and construction of three new regional libraries

  • Preservation of the community library at Athens Drive High School

  • Expansion of Sunday hours at all community libraries

  • Funding and development of the YMCA Southeast Raleigh Elementary – combining a school, a YMCA, retail, childcare and affordable housing in one pilot project in Southeast Raleigh

Supporting Facts:

  • Teachers are going to other states and/or leaving the profession solely due to financial reasons. To keep up with growth, we must find 1,000 new teachers a year.

  • North Carolina has dropped in teacher pay from 14th to 47th in the nation.

  • Our student population is growing 3,000 students per year, however, our per-pupil funding continues to drop.

Taking Action:

Listening to Parents – We need to be listening to parents about how we can improve our public school system. You know your children and their needs as much as anyone. You know what it takes to return our public school system to the nationally recognized status we once held.

Working with the School Board. –  We have a very good school board, and if we all work together, we can accomplish much more.

Investing in our Teachers – We can’t continue to lose our best teachers to other states, counties and cities due to pay. We have to figure out how to compensate our teachers equal to the value they bring our children and community. A competitive salary is mandatory for our teachers to come and stay in Wake County.