WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — It’s almost that time of year again. On May 1, teachers around the state plan to rally in Raleigh.
Many teachers have already requested the day off, and some schools may be forced to cancel for the day.
Teachers will rally next month for several issues including more funding and better benefits.
State Superintendent Mark Johnson says students in southeastern North Carolina have already missed so much time because of Florence, so he does not want them to miss any more schools days.
In our area so far, 180 New Hanover County teachers have requested the day off. Brunswick County told they have 150 requests, Pender County has 28, and Bladen County has 12.
A spokesman from Brunswick County Schools says their decision whether to cancel school will depend on whether enough substitutes are available.
Johnson supports teachers rights, but wishes they could rally on a day that school isn’t in session.
“First and foremost, we know especially here in eastern North Carolina, we’ve been hit hard this year,” Johnson said. “A lot of students lost a lot of instructional time and we don’t want to lose any more instructional time. We also know that some students struggle at home, and I wish this wasn’t the case but it is, to get the right amount of nutrition.”
Johnson says if schools close, certain school employees will not get paid.
He also says many parents would need to find childcare, and they could end up having to lose time at work themselves.
Pender County Schools lost around 30 days of class time due to the storm. They released a statement about the rally.
“Pender County Schools is committed to providing students and staff members with the necessary resources needed to foster the highest quality learning environment. As the N.C. Association of Educators’ May 1 rally in Raleigh approaches, district officials are currently in discussion with others on the appropriate course of action to ensure instruction at our 18 school campuses remains unchanged while allowing district employees to engage in their constitutional rights. Pender County Schools will inform the community on its decision as more information becomes available.”
A spokesperson from New Hanover County Schools says they will continue to monitor the situation.
WWAY also reached out to Columbus County Schools, but have not heard back yet.