As a member and former Chair of the Franklin County Board of Education, I have proven myself to be a strong advocate for students, parents, and teachers. I have witnessed firsthand how our classrooms are impacted by the General Assembly's lack of adequate funding for our public schools. Our General Assembly has shown that public education is not their priority and they have forced local school districts to do more with less. High teacher turnover rates, driven by inadequate pay, have had a devastating impact on the classroom. It is time we reverse these damaging policies and make a commitment to raise teacher salaries to at least the national average. Our education system was once recognized as among the best in the United States. I believe it is time we are recognized for that again.
The foundation of our economy is a trained, educated workforce. Fostering both a strong public and higher education system is crucial for workforce development, and in turn, the recruitment of businesses to Eastern Wake and Franklin Counties. We must also work across the aisle to ensure that small business owners and start-ups receive the support they need to continue to grow and create jobs here in North Carolina. Businesses rely on workers who are ready and trained for the responsibilites of the workplace. The economy of North Carolina cannot flourish unless we provide a sound education for our children.