When thinking about supporting public education, there are a few groups and events that I'm thinking of right now. First, join me at Historic Thousands on Jones Street (HKonJ) People's Assembly in downtown Raleigh on Saturday, February 8. Education is one of the eight important issues for which we are marching.
Second, I'm thinking about canvassing to get out the vote for our pro-public education candidates. Flip NC is one of the canvassing groups in the Triangle and Triad with whom I've had the privilege of knocking on doors. Neighbors on Call is another – they target different districts. Neighbors on Call sent representatives to canvass with Flip NC on one of the days I canvassed. You can meet NoC folks in your area and learn about their 2020 plans at "Now What?" events across the Triangle, Feb 3 & 4. Details and RSVP link.
The 2020 primary is around the corner: absentee ballot by mail voting has already started (request deadline is Feb 25), early voting is Feb 13-29, and election day is March 3. Voter ID is NOT NEEDED for the March 3 primary as long as you're already registered to vote.
We're here to help you get ready to vote! So let's talk about the office of State Superintendent of Public Instruction. What is the role of this public official? You may have really been wondering that if you've been watching our current superintendent, Mark Johnson. (Read more here.)
Read about the role of the NC Superintendent of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Superintendent of Public Instruction is an elected executive position in the North Carolina state government. The Superintendent is the secretary and chief administrative officer of the State Board of Education, and is responsible for the day-to-day management of the state's public school system.
The State Constitution of 1868 first identified the position of Superintendent of Public Instruction as a new office within the Executive Branch, and it was made part of the Council of State.
The Department of Public Instruction, with the Superintendent at its helm, manages the daily operations of the state's entire public school system. The department has a staff of nearly 750 people that is directly involved in the education of North Carolina's students, leading the public schools in the areas of curriculum and instruction, accountability, finance, teacher and administrator preparation and licensing, professional development, and school business support and operations.
In addition to ensuring the education of North Carolina's children, and the office is responsible for:
- Enforcing North Carolina's state education laws
- Implementing State Board of Education policies and procedures
- Managing public school funds totaling approximately $8 billion in state and federal funds
- Licensing the almost 120,000 public school teachers and administrators
- Collaborating with the NC Center for the Advancement of Teaching, the NC Teacher Academy, the NC virtual Public School, the nine Regional Education Service Alliances/Consortia, and the state's 115 local education agencies
The Department of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education share responsibility for the public education system. Much of the administrative support comes from the board, which includes an executive director, staff attorney, and legislative liaison.
Read more here.
Now let's be reminded of who is running for NC Superintendent of Public Instruction. The five Democratic candidates are
James Barrett, former state Department of Public Instruction
Constance Lav Johnson, owner of CityPolitical Magazine
Michael Maher, N.C. State assistant dean
Jen Mangrum, UNC Greensboro professor
Keith Sutton, Wake County school board member
The two Republican candidates are
Craig Horn, Representative NCGA District 68
Catherine Truitt, Chancellor of non-profit Western Governors University North Carolina (WGU NC)
Now that we've seen who's running for NC Superintendent of Public Instruction, let's be reminded of the purpose of Stamp NC Blue. . . . Our main focus is on flipping the state legislature, but we will urge voters to support progressive candidates up and down the ballot.
With that in mind, and relating it back to the State Superintendent race, let's talk about why it is important to support a progressive candidate in this race.
Let's look at the history of the two Republican candidates' "support" for public education through the eyes of two veteran NC teachers:
This Veteran Teacher Would Never Vote For Rep. Craig Horn As The State Superintendent For MANY Reasons
2016 Vs. 2020 – Measuring Catherine Truitt’s Words As a Candidate For State Super Against Being McCrory’s Education Advisor
Read more in a previous post in SNCB: Oct 21, 2019: Rep. Horn for NC Superintendent of Public Instruction?
I think Stu Egan says it best in the last words of his post about Catherine Truitt above
Yes, anyone other than Mark Johnson would probably be a huge improvement as far as being the NC State Super is concerned, but Truitt and Horn would be a extension of what has been happening these last nine years to public schools in NC.
GET READY TO VOTE BLUE!
Join the NC Parent-Teacher Association, Public Schools First NC, the Public School Forum of North Carolina, and the NC League of Women Voters for the NC Superintendent of Public Instruction Forum Streaming LIVE on February 6 from 7-9 pm. (You can find the link to the streaming on WRAL.com as the event gets closer.)
Then you decide who should be our next NC Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Tags: (education, nc superintendent, 2020 elections, NCPol)
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