Monday numbers: A closer look at pre-K access in North Carolina and around the country

BY: - May 9, 2022

When state lawmakers return to Raleigh later this month for the 2022 short session, look for renewed debate regarding the state's ongoing failure to comply with court orders in the landmark Leandro lawsuit that directed it to better fund North Carolina's public education system. One important aspect of those orders involves the state's commitment to providing quality early childhood education...

Present day controversies are front and center at legislative hearing on the future of public education

BY: - April 27, 2022

Committee chair challenges the relevance of state's landmark Leandro school funding case The state’s decades-old school funding case, Leandro, could become “moot," depending on decisions by a House select committee charged with “reinventing” North Carolina’s public education system, State Rep. John Torbett, a Gaston County Republican and chairman of the committee, told Policy Watch on Monday.

House Democrats pass Biden’s $1.85 trillion ‘Build Back Better’ plan

BY: - November 19, 2021

By Laura Olson, Jacob Fischler and Ariana Figueroa WASHINGTON — U.S. House Democrats united around a landmark $1.85 trillion social spending and climate bill on Friday, sending the major plank of President Joe Biden’s economic agenda to the Senate. Democratic leaders in the House heralded the 220-213 near party-line vote on the so-called Build Back […]


Build Back Better framework represents historic opportunity to improve the lives of North Carolinians

BY: - November 3, 2021

NOTE: The Build Back Better framework released last week is currently being crafted into legislation and changes to the scope and scale will be updated or linked to at the top of this post.  The Build Back Better framework released last week by the White House is a chance to take a huge step forward […]

What’s in—and out—of Biden’s $1.75 trillion social spending and climate bill

BY: and - October 29, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s sprawling social spending and climate package has been slimmed down into a still-massive $1.75 trillion plan that he and top congressional Democrats are attempting to wrestle through after months of negotiations. Snipped from that proposal are a number of key priorities for Democrats, including an attempt to create the first […]

Congress has a plan for universal pre-K. Will states opt in?

BY: - October 4, 2021

WASHINGTON — Nearly a fifth of President Joe Biden’s $3.5 trillion sweeping social spending package is dedicated to providing low-cost care for children from birth to kindergarten—investments that would benefit single parents and low-income families. But how the states implement their programs for pre-K for 3-and 4-year-olds—or whether they even decide to accept the cash, […]


NC schoolchildren deserve better than childish excuses

BY: - October 1, 2021

“You can’t make me.” All of us have heard this taunt at some point during our childhood. “You can’t make me” says so much in four short words. It says, “I have the power, not you.” It says, “your interests are far less important than mine.” It’s a statement that’s selfish and demeans the less powerful.

U.S. House committees advance ambitious education and climate initiatives

BY: - September 14, 2021

Proposals would fund universal pre-K and free community college, hasten shift to renewable energy WASHINGTON—Two important U.S. House committees advanced ambitious plans to address national education needs and the global climate emergency late last week.

Monday numbers: A closer look at the lack of educational services for Pre-K kids

BY: - May 3, 2021

Much attention has been paid to learning loss during the pandemic in elementary and middle school grades, but what about our youngest learners? A new report by the National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) at Rutgers University examines the barriers pre- and post-pandemic that have left many 3- and 4-year-olds unserved by prekindergarten.


Editorial: North Carolina’s “frustration” over reading scores a bipartisan problem

BY: - November 4, 2019

Food for thought in Monday’s board editorial from The Charlotte Observer, which noted that the news of lagging reading scores in North Carolina should be, all budget disputes aside, a bipartisan problem. The news has been bad for some time as it concerns Read to Achieve, a Republican-championed initiative that has, surely for a variety […]


NC needs to dramatically expand early childhood education…the genuine kind

BY: - June 11, 2019

[Cross-posted from the blog of veteran North Carolina educator Justin Parmenter, Notes from the Chalkboard.] As members of the North Carolina House and Senate huddle behind closed doors to hash out a budget compromise which may well include a controversial online Pre-K pilot, a new report by the non-partisan Program Evaluation Division of the North […]


Virtual Pre-K back in House budget, no funds for expanding legitimate Pre-K

BY: - May 6, 2019

[Cross-posted from from the website “Notes from the Chalkboard”] This is the post I didn’t want to write. On Thursday night, a successful amendment to the House budget by Mecklenburg County Representative Carla Cunningham stripped funding from Representative Craig Horn’s Virtual Pre-K pilot program initiative and transferred the money to the Department of Public Instruction’s […]