education funding

Boy in a classroom

NC House panel advances bill to give school social workers a pay raise

BY: - May 31, 2023

The North Carolina House Committee on K-12 Education advanced House Bill 762 Tuesday, which would reward certain school employees based on the amount of education they receive.  The Republican-sponsored bill would grant salary supplements to school social workers who have attained a master’s degree or higher. They would be eligible for the additional pay whether […]

Gov. Roy Cooper declares ‘state of emergency’ for public education

BY: - May 22, 2023

Gov. Roy Cooper went on the attack Monday, blasting away at Republican legislation that he contends will “choke the life out of public education” in North Carolina. The Democratic governor said that it’s time to declare a “state of emergency” and he urged North Carolinians to contact lawmakers to protest legislation that could irreversibly damage […]

the North Carolina Legislative Building

Senate budget would take education funding to destructive new depths

BY: - May 20, 2023

“Fund students, not systems” has become the rallying cry of the country’s most extreme school choice zealots. It’s a silly motto for many reasons. Notably, private schools and public schools are both “systems,” and systems are necessary to efficiently provide students with high quality education serving the public good. Despite the motto’s obvious ridiculousness, it […]

Republican senators

Public School Forum leader: Senate budget proposal comes up woefully short

BY: - May 18, 2023

The State of North Carolina has money. In 2022, North Carolina had over $6 billion in unappropriated funds. This year, North Carolina is expected to have at least $3 billion more than budgeted in revenue. This is a significant surplus. And yet, the budget speeding through the Senate this week — a proposal based solely […]

State Rep. Julie von Haefen on a bevy of bills that threaten to undermine public education

BY: - May 8, 2023

This past week was crossover week at the North Carolina General Assembly – the legislature’s self-imposed deadline for passing bills to keep them eligible during the 2023 session. It’s an event that helped turn the steady stream of backward-looking bills that have been winning approval from the Republican supermajorities into a virtual torrent. Fortunately, despite […]

Boy in a classroom

House budget proposal falls woefully short of what our students and educators deserve

BY: - April 4, 2023

North Carolina’s public schools face many challenges. In November, the Supreme Court ruled that the current level of school funding is so low that it violates the constitutional rights of the state’s 1.5 million public school students. Student performance on state tests is improving but remains below pre-pandemic levels and opportunity gaps have grown. The […]

A bad idea that refuses to go away: Legislators try again to revive misnamed “Taxpayer Protection Act”

BY: - February 28, 2023

The idea of slapping inaccurate or deceptive names on controversial legislation in order to drive and manipulate public opinion is nothing particularly new in the frequently cynical world of politics. Authoritarian regimes across the globe have long used this tactic, but it’s an American phenomenon too. Two decades ago, the administration of President George W. Bush...


NC schools are struggling to survive while rich people and corporations keep getting tax cuts

BY: - February 27, 2023

In 2013, the North Carolina General Assembly started cutting taxes (mostly for big corporations and wealthy people). Most years since have seen lawmakers continue to divert public funds from things like schools, childcare, broadband, water quality, and public safety, to the pockets of out-of-state corporations and the wealthy few. These cuts also put more of […]

Facing legislative headwinds, State Board will ask lawmakers for funds to implement Leandro plan

BY: - January 24, 2023

Request enjoys bipartisan support, but state Superintendent is notably silent The State Board of Education has agreed to ask lawmakers to support the “full implementation” of a court-approved school improvement plan during 2023 budget deliberations. The state board and other supporters of the Comprehensive Plan believe it can transform North Carolina’s system of K-12 education and nudge the state toward its constitutional mandate to provide children with sound basic education.

Year in review: Our top editorial cartoons of 2022

BY: - December 23, 2022

For going on two decades now, NC Policy Watch has been fortunate enough to be able to feature the expertly crafted, frequently hilarious, sometimes disturbing, and always thought-provoking commentaries of one of the nation’s top editorial cartoonists, John Cole. While it would be worth your time to look through all of John’s contributions to Policy Watch from the past here are some his best entries from 2022.