Emergency bill proposed for students, teachers in wake of hurricane Florence

(Photo: MGN)

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A bill to be introduced in the General Assembly could ease the strain on schools, students and teachers affected by Hurricane Florence for going on two weeks now.

Sen. Michael Lee (R-New Hanover) joined Rep. Craig Horn (R-Union), the co-chair of the NC House Education K-12 Committee, and Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson today to announce the state is moving quickly to get schools back on track and to make sure students and teachers are not penalized for time missed.

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They have drafted a bill that would forgive time students and teachers at public schools lost in any district affected by Hurricane Florence.  The district does not have to be declared a disaster area to be protected.

The bill will also make sure teachers do not have to lose pay or use any vacation time to make up for lost days.

Superintendent Johnson says he knows “things in Raleigh don’t move quickly,” but he says representatives know they have to move fast on this.

“We heard from local districts,” Johnson said. “We heard that they needed the flexibility. We heard the concerns that teachers were not going to get paid, and this is immediate action we can take as a first step in order to make sure we do what is right for our students and teachers”

The draft does not address charter schools, but Johnson says they will be addressed soon.

The General Assembly is slated to convene a Special Session about Hurricane Florence in Raleigh on October 9.