WJTV News Channel 12 - NORTH CAROLINA: State superintendent criticizes proposed cuts

NC state superintendent criticizes proposed cuts

Posted: Updated:
North Carolina schools superintendent June Atkinson North Carolina schools superintendent June Atkinson
RALEIGH, N.C. -

The North Carolina Senate budget would give teachers raises, but when those raises come at the expense of cuts to the state Department of Public of Instruction, education leaders say schools will still suffer.

State schools superintendent June Atkinson, her local counterparts and school administrators called on House lawmakers Wednesday to reject the Senate's proposed cuts to the department's budget.

Atkinson and administrators from rural and urban districts across the state criticized the proposal to cut the department's expenses by 30 percent or $15 million, saying it would undermine the support the department gives to teachers. Atkinson said if the cuts are approved, it would result in a loss of 100-150 DPI staff.

Administrators from school districts across the state said DPI has provided essential services and has provided research information, curriculum development and technology support that have helped them function in the midst of budget cuts over the years.

"DPI has been the lifeblood of my system for the years that I've been there," said Michael Dunsmore, superintendent of Tyrrell County schools. He said because of state budget cuts, his district has cut 26 positions, 21 percent of his total staff, in a five-year period.

"I rely on the Department of Public Instruction for their support for those things that we couldn't otherwise afford. I don't want to be the poster boy for the first school system that goes out of business in the state of North Carolina."

Ricky Lopes, finance officer Cumberland County schools, said giving teachers raises won't help districts when they have to cut jobs to fund them.

With the Senate proposal, Lopes said his district would have to cut 300 positions in order to fund teacher raises.

"I'm all for pay raises but if you're going to undercut the support structures I wouldn't really call that a raise in compensation," said Dale Cole, a principal from Beaufort County.

Atkinson said DPI's work is designed to help and support teachers to teach more effectively. She said they cannot fill every role in the school and still focus on teaching students.

"They cannot be the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker," she said. "They need an infrastructure to help them so they can pay attention to children and not other areas."

The Senate $21.2 billion Senate budget that was passed last week offers veteran teachers pay raises above 10 percent, but includes cuts to fund the raises. They budget includes line-item cuts totaling $390 million, of which more than half came from reducing funds that school districts could otherwise use to hire 7,400 teacher assistants.

RELATED STORIES

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

  • PoliticsMore>>

  • NC flags lowered on day of Fulghum service

    NC flags lowered on day of Fulghum service

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 5:11 AM EDT2014-07-23 09:11:02 GMT
    A first-term North Carolina legislator who died last weekend will be formally remembered within state government and at the church he attended for decades.
    A first-term North Carolina legislator who died last weekend will be formally remembered within state government and at the church he attended for decades.
  • NC counties see sales tax changes in Senate bill

    NC counties see sales tax changes in Senate bill

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 10:46 PM EDT2014-07-23 02:46:55 GMT
    File PhotoFile Photo
    Four large North Carolina counties would see their authority to raise sales taxes scaled back in Senate legislation that its Republican supporters say would level the playing field across the state in generating revenue.
    Four large North Carolina counties would see their authority to raise sales taxes scaled back in Senate legislation that its Republican supporters say would level the playing field across the state in generating revenue.
  • State: Ex-Tarboro town manager used funds inappropriately

    State: Ex-Tarboro town manager used funds inappropriately

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 7:10 PM EDT2014-07-22 23:10:06 GMT

    The state auditor’s report determined that the former town manager “made nearly $366,000 of purchases" that were inappropriate.

    The state auditor’s report determined that the former town manager “made nearly $366,000 of purchases" that were inappropriate.

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Teen mom charged after baby found buried at Louisburg home

    Teen mom charged after baby found buried at Louisburg home

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 11:44 PM EDT2014-07-23 03:44:25 GMT
    Ashley Reed, 16, of Louisburg is charged with concealing a death after her infant was found buried beside her house.
    Ashley Reed, 16, of Louisburg is charged with concealing a death after her infant was found buried beside her house.
  • Largest companies by revenue in each state

    Largest companies by revenue in each state

    Thursday, July 10 2014 8:01 PM EDT2014-07-11 00:01:10 GMT
    Broadview Networks recently decided to find out the biggest -- by revenue -- company in each state in the US.The company used the Fortune 500 list to start with, but needed data by state, so it turned to Hoover's.With data from that company, they were able to search through each state's list of companies and then find the largest -- by revenue.Just flip through the list above and see who is the biggest in each state, what town they are based and their revenue.
    Broadview Networks recently decided to find out the biggest -- by revenue -- company in each state in the US.The company used the Fortune 500 list to start with, but needed data by state, so it turned to Hoover's.With data from that company, they were able to search through each state's list of companies and then find the largest -- by revenue.Just flip through the list above and see who is the biggest in each state, what town they are based and their revenue.
  • Couple arrested for having sex on Cortez Beach in front of beachgoers

    Couple arrested for having sex on Cortez Beach in front of beachgoers

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 1:08 PM EDT2014-07-22 17:08:35 GMT
    Bradenton Beach police officers were dispatched to Cortez Beach after a few people called 911 and complained about a couple having sex publicly, right next to a little girl on the beach.
    Bradenton Beach police officers were dispatched to Cortez Beach after a few people called 911 and complained about a couple having sex publicly, right next to a little girl on the beach.
Powered by WorldNow

1820 TV Road
Jackson, MS 39204

Telephone: 601.372.6311
Fax: 804.819.5569
Email: wjtvnews@wjtv.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.