Lawmakers divided on teacher rally in Raleigh
SOUTHEAST, NC (WWAY) — It’s two sides to the coin. Representatives are divided on the issues teachers are bringing forward but are all welcoming to listen to their concerns.
“We’re going to do what is necessary to propel North Carolina to the top of education,” Representative Deb Butler said.
“That’s their right to not teach Wednesday and their right to express what they want,” Representative Frank Iler said.
As thousands of teachers get ready to march in Raleigh local lawmakers prepare to hear their concerns. The North Carolina Association of Educators says teachers will be fighting for things like more money spent per-pupil and better teacher pay. When it comes to textbooks and new technology, Iler says lawmakers have worked on that.
“We’ve allocated plenty of money to have technology in every classroom and that’s on the way. It’s also been a lot of gains in the urban areas, now we’re trying to get to the rural areas,” Iler said.
However, Butler says a recent visit to a school showed more needs to be done.
“Someone said, ‘Well we don’t need textbooks because they have computers.’ No they don’t. They don’t have computers, they don’t have the resources they need. They don’t have textbooks,” Butler said.
Iler also believes this rally is just a forced effort by the NCAE.
“Their membership is hurting. I think they need to do something to try to get some attention and I think this is the NCAE trying to get attention and getting it at the expense of our children not being taught,” Iler said.
But Butler says Iler’s comments are part of the problem.
“Teachers are not politicians. They don’t care about politics. They care about their students. They care about classrooms. They care about teaching. And so, to demean their opinion like that is regrettable,” Butler said.
WWAY reached out to Representatives Ted Davis, Holly Grange and Michael Lee. Davis and Grange were unable to comment on the matter and Davis could not be reached.