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Johnston County Board of Education {_getChooseLabel(this.selections.length)}

The Johnston County Board of Education is the local governing body of the County Public School System. Its members are elected at large and serve staggered 4-year terms.The 7-member school board has 5 primary responsibilities:1. Employ the superintendent2. Establish policy3. Determine annual operating and capital budgets4. Approve student assignment boundaries5. Oversee the management of the school district’s major systems, including budget and finance, curriculum and instruction, personnel and auxiliary services

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    Lyn Andrews

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    Kay Carroll

  • Teresa M. Grant

  • Ronald Johnson

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    Rick Mercier

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    Terry Tippett

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    Chuck Williams

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    Mike Wooten

Biographical Information

What experience and qualities do you feel you bring to the Johnston County Board of Education?

What considerations are crucial in order for a Board of Education to carry out its duties ethically?

What are the critical state funding needs for Johnston County schools and how would you address those needs?

How would you assess teacher satisfaction in the county and how would you promote professional development?

Pre-Kindergarten is: [Importance Scale]

Please explain your choice regarding the importance of Pre-Kindergarten.

What are the issues in recruiting and retaining qualified teachers?

Age (optional) 62
Contact Phone (919) 609-9413
email address lyn_andrews@ymail.com
Twitter @LynJcps
Position/philosophy statement Every student deserves and should have the opportunity to receive a quality education, and I truly believe that every child can learn.
I have over 30 years of experience working in Johnston County Public Schools. During my career I served as a teacher, coach, administrator and retired in 2010 as the Director of the Exceptional Children Programs. I currently serve as an Adjunct Professor at Campbell University, working with future teachers. I am a graduate of SSS High School, Peace College and Appalachian State University. I hold a degree in Master of Education from East Carolina University. I also have a Master of School Administration degree from North Carolina State University. I feel that I am equipped to serve as a school board member. I have worked with every facet of our school system. I have the knowledge to ask the right questions and make informed decisions. I have experience in the finances of a school system. I understand Federal, State and Local funding. I am also trained in the legal issues involved in public education, and I have a clear understanding of what teachers need to be successful.
I believe the first most crucial consideration of a Board of Education is to make sure they fully understand their role and responsibilities. Within the responsibilities of development and implementation of policy, the board is responsible for making decisions in regards to the superintendent's personnel recommendations. The board is also responsible for providing every child with the opportunity to receive a “sound basic education". Within these responsibilities are the management of the financial affairs of the system in order to provide the best possible education for the students. The board must resist the temptation to actually run the school system. The Board is certainly a link between the community and the school system, and should be available to listen to concerns of the stakeholders. For a Board of Education to be successful, they must work together, putting aside personal agendas in order to do what is best for the teachers and students.
In North Carolina, unlike every state in the nation, except - Hawaii -funds are allocated to districts through a resource allocation model. In this model, money and positions are distributed for a particular purpose with the use of formulas. With this type of funding, the State has primary control over how the money is spent. There is little flexibility allowed. Johnston County has several areas of need. We need additional funding to help with the continued growth in some areas of our district. Schools with high numbers of poverty need funds to help supplement what these schools do not have available. We continue to need funding to address the use of technology and other resources for alternative means of teaching. The district has received Federal relief funds, but these funds will not be long term. It would be my hope that the State would address the rate of inflation within the funds allocated. Inflation has not been addressed in our State budget since the recession of 2008.
In Johnston County, teachers are surveyed each year in regards to several aspects of their jobs through a resource called Panorama. The State of North Carolina also surveys teachers through the Teacher Working Conditions. The reports are shared with the Board of Education. It is critical for all involved in our educational system to have a clear understanding of teacher satisfaction. Obviously, the principal of a school should have a clear understanding of how his or her teachers feel about the current situations. I am sure we are all concerned about our teachers and the challenges they are facing at the current time. Teachers are being ask to promote student learning through a new avenue. For this reason professional development is essential. The task of professional development is the responsibility of our Central Office staff, as they support individual schools. The board must make sure that ample resources are available to allow these training opportunities to take place.
I would hope that we all believe that the opportunity of pre-kindergarten service is important. Research shows that early intervention is imperative, especially in low wealth areas. To understand why pre-kindergarten is so important, we must first understand the condition in which some students enter school. We have the potential in our district to have kindergarten students who have not seen a printed document such as a book. They have had little exposure to basic skills of letters, numbers, colors ,shapes and other aspect of pre-kindergarten skills. For this reason, it is imperative to have the opportunity available to these young children.
As I stated above, the lack of opportunity for some students makes early intervention imperative. Many of our students who are behind in kindergarten are not cognitively delayed or at-risk from other potential problems. These students simply have been denied adequate exposure to necessary skills. Pre-kindergarten can help these areas of deficit tremendously. Pre-kindergarten also helps in the development of social and emotional skills. These skills can be lacking in all young children, but especially in students who enter our school system from poverty circumstances. Early intervention has proven to be effective when implemented with efficiency and fidelity. For this reason, we must continue to provide strategic and consistent services to our young children. If we desire to truly close the gap between proficiency of skills and non-proficiency, pre-kindergarten must be provided.
In recent years, our numbers of college students entering the field of education have declined. There are many reasons for this decline. One obvious reason would be the pay scale for beginning teachers. College students are leaving college with loans to be paid, and many look at the salary of teachers and are fearful of the ability to pay off these debts with their current salary. Along with this issue, is the move by our state legislature to deny payment to teachers who have obtained a Masters Degree. Probably the main reason for the difficulty in recruiting/retaining teachers is the demand placed on teachers to manage their classrooms, along with other responsibilities. If you were to ask 100 teachers what is your biggest challenge in teaching, I feel certain the majority would indicate classroom management. Classroom management is a skill which must be developed and nurtured. Staff development plays a vital role in this. New teachers must receive training and feel supported.
Age (optional) 72
Contact Phone (919) 631-7280
email address KAYCARROLL02@GMAIL.COM
Position/philosophy statement Public education is the foundation on which our nation has been built. It is vital for our nation to advance and succeed.
I founded a business 43 years ago and have managed budgets, employees, problems and successes during that time. I know how to manage budgets and prioritize needs. I previously served on the BOE for 16 years. I have worked with county commissioners establishing school budgets, bonds for building schools, laying out long-range plans for school improvement and growth demands. I believe I have established trusted relationships with the County commissioner board. I have served on boards that developed long-range plans for our school system working with superintendents, principals, teachers and parents that made our system one of the top performing systems in the state and prepared students to be successful in their post-graduate plans, whether that be workforce or college. This experience will help us again move our system upward and prepare our students to be competitive with students from any other system in NC. My experience will help us achieve these goals once again.
Understanding that its job is to establish goals for the system and policies to guide the system in getting there. The BOE is not responsible for the daily working of the system; that is the job of the superindendent who answers to the BOE. Certainly the BOE is a conduit for parent concerns, teacher concerns, student concerns and community concerns and should make sure the superintendent knows these concerns and that both the BOE and superintendent work together to address these concerns. The public at large and our school staff should feel confident that the BOE members will handle any information confidentially, professionally and appropriately. The charge of the BOE is to work as hard as it can to provide the best education to the students of this county - keep the main thing the main thing - education.
There are two issues relating to our funding in Johnston County. First, the BOE has to get its priorities in order and control its spending. Not enough attention has been paid to how quickly fund balance has been spent and no corrections made to stem that yearly downward trend. With this financial discipline in place, we can then begin pushing for appropriate funding. That being said, our county needs to commit to funding our schools at the state average per pupil. Data shows that our relative effort in Johnston County is pretty good, but we can and should do better. The state needs to be forced to recognize that it is underfunding the exceptional childrens program statewide. The funding percentage our state uses has, for years, been less than most systems experience. Our system also needs to look at identification of students and make sure we do it appropriately. For years our legislature has been cutting school funds or diverting funds to other areas. Public pressure is needed.
I think teacher satisfaction can be assessed in a number of ways. Direct surveys (anonymous) from teachers is certainly appropriate. Principal observations and feedback is another tool. A very subjective way is through how well our system is performing. If the BOE and central administration is doing its job of providing support through funding, programming, shared sense of direction, goal setting, discipline within the organization and the classroom, satisfaction improves. Also, the teachers need consistency from the BOE and central administration to help build trust and comfort in the workplace. Teachers need to not have to worry about anything but teaching students. I think we would see their satisfaction in improved school performance if this occurs in our school system. Professional development is encouraged in our system already, but as with all professions, financial reward motivates us all and that needs to be part of the equation.
:Very Important. Data shows that children who experience quality pre-kindergarten programs perform better when followed-up with quality kindergarten and elementary curriculum and teacher interaction vs children without pre-kindergarten exposure, especially for economically disadvantaged children and dual language learners.
The studies of pre-k education do show greater improvement in learning for the economically disadvantaged and dual language children than for more advantaged and English-proficient children. If followed up with a quality curriculum in kindergarten and elementary grades this improvement can be sustained and improved. Our school system has long expressed the knowledge that we need to reach these children by the 3rd grade or we lose them by high school age. This amplifies the importance of not only a strong pre-k program, but a well-implemented elementary curriculum. The evidence for longer-term impacts of pre-k programs is sparse and precludes broad conclusions. Most studies point to the quality of pre-school program followed-up by quality kindergarten and elementary curriculum as an important factor in the improvement of learning and sustaining and amplifying the gains for the economically disadvantaged and dual language children.
Many issues are at play in recruiting and retaining teachers. Recruiting teachers requires us to be competitive with our local supplement. I have long held that we can't beat Wake County in local supplement, but we must be between Wake County and the other counties surrounding Johnston County. Money is not everything, so we must create a school environment that is inviting and supportive of teachers. A teacher must feel support from the central office and the BOE. Teachers share their experiences with each other and a disorganized, chaotic school system makes recruiting and retention truly difficult. Our school system must establish a bond of trust with our staff by listening to them, providing for their classroom needs as best we can-- an organized, disciplined system with a clear vision and goals for improvement. These same issues help with retention of teachers. Quality staff developement programs and potential for growth within our system are important for retention.
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email address rickmercier19@gmail.com
Position/philosophy statement Our children deserve better. I will bring sorely needed competence and integrity to the school board.
I was educated in public schools in a blue-collar community in Baltimore, and I know public schools can provide a great education for all of our children if we invest in them and value and support our teachers.

I had 17 years of journalism experience as a writer and editor covering stories all over the world. But I developed a passion for community journalism, and I was proud of what I contributed to the community in Clayton as editor of The Clayton News-Star. I learned how local government works, including the inner workings of the relationship between a school board and county commissioners. I have gained more expertise in the workings of local government as a member of the Town of Garner's leadership team since 2010. This experience will enable me to be an effective school board member who can advocate for our schools and help lead the long-term planning needed to get our school system back on track.

I got into journalism to be a truth teller. That's what you can expect from me.
First, each individual member needs to be committed to working for the best interests of students, of teachers and other staff, of parents and of taxpayers. The board member is not sitting on the board to work for their own interests but for the interests of others. That is the first ethical imperative.

Second, I believe there needs to be a basic level of trust among board members. If that trust is lost, the board becomes dysfunctional--as we have seen with the current board.

Third, there needs to be institutional transparency--and that includes both the board and the school system in general. We must have a budgetary process that is more transparent and comprehensible to the general public. We must also make sure there aren't "side meetings" outside of regular meetings in which decisions are made. The board can learn best practices from other school systems and also receive thorough training from the UNC School of Government in how to be open, transparent and ethically sound.
Critical state funding needs are better pay for teachers and classified staff, more funding for exceptional children programs commensurate with the county's true needs and the issuance of state school construction bonds. I will constantly lobby our state legislative delegation on these matters.

In addition to pressuring statewide office holders to meet their state constitutional obligations to adequately fund quality education for all children in North Carolina, I will work with commissioners to increase local funding to protect teacher pay supplements and make sure we are more competitive with other counties, especially Wake. I will also work with commissioners on a funding formula that gets our per-pupil spending on a level with peer counties.

I will lead an effort with commissioners to plan for a bond referendum to help us catch up with school construction and renovations. Finally, I will insist on a place at the table to address out-of-control growth in parts of the county.
Obviously, it is difficult to make a blanket statement about teacher satisfaction across the county. I have gotten to know many dedicated teachers who love Johnston County Public Schools and are committed to making our school system the best in the state. And yet, alongside this love for, and commitment to, JCPS, there are also serious morale issues among many teachers because of overcrowded classrooms, because of a lack of resources, because of aging technology and, of course, because of pay supplements that aren't where they should be.

As of the writing of this (July 30), many teachers are concerned about their health--and the health of their loved ones--because of COVID-19 and plans to reopen the schools. Many teachers feel that the decisions about school reopenings are not based on scientific data and the recommendations of public health experts but on political expediency. I also know that many teachers feel that they have not been adequately consulted about reopening plans.
Universal pre-kindergarten is critically important, and the state should fund it.
We know that pre-kindergarten prepares children for their academic career and can help close the preparedness gap between children from lower-income and higher-income households. Exhaustive research has shown that children who attend publicly funded pre-K programs are better equipped for kindergarten than similar children who have not attended pre-K.

And universal pre-K has been shown to result in more gains for all children. Recent research from Dartmouth College has found that universal public pre-K programs make a bigger positive impact on students’ academic success than programs that target specific children with high needs. Moreover, the gains of universal pre-K programs are higher for children from lower-income homes than what they reap from targeted programs such as North Carolina’s NC pre-K, according to the research.
Adequate pay supplements are essential in recruiting and retaining qualified teachers. The school board, in conjunction with county commissioners, should implement a multi-year plan to make our pay supplements more competitive with Wake County's.

Young teachers need support within their schools, and there should be a good balance in each school of beginning teachers and more experienced ones. There should also be ample opportunities for professional development, both within the schools (led by master teachers) and outside of it. Teachers also need adequate resources and reasonable class sizes.

As regards the issue of recruiting and retaining teachers, JCPS needs to make a much more concerted effort to hire and retain teachers of color, and to provide them with career paths into leadership positions within the school system. More than 40 percent of our students are students of color, but the percentage of teachers of color is less than half that. We have to close that gap.
Age (optional) 56
Contact Phone (919) 453-8584
email address terrytippett10@gmail.com
YouTube video
Position/philosophy statement Johnston County Schools has seen a steady decline in most areas since 2000 and no longer meets the needs or expectations of all our stakeholders.
My experience as a Special Education Teacher/Athletic Director/Coach in JCPS beginning in 2000 has provided the opportunity to interact with many different groups of stakeholders. I understand the challenges each group face as they strive to provide the best educational opportunity for their student. I have seen the frustration with a lack of accountability, transparency, and overall attainment of goals within our system and the effect it has on the provision of services to our students, the morale of our staff, and the ability to know where tax dollars are going. I have seen firsthand many issues which need attention and am prepared to address each in a manner that will move JCPS to the best in the NC. The status quo is no longer acceptable and the time for excuses is over. Our students, school staff, parents and taxpayers deserve a product they can all be proud of and one that prepares all students for their future beyond high school. We can make JCPS the best in the state
The Board of Education must function as a unit, not a group of individuals. There will be disagreements on the road to get to the same destination. Each member must, however, stand for what is right and never compromise to appease individuals or certain groups. The goal has to always be that doing whatever is necessary to make JCPS the best in NC will drive everything. The needs of all stakeholders are important, but do not outweigh the needs of the student. Considerations must be made and understood when a vision or initiatives are implemented. The school staff actually implementing the vision or initiatives must be allowed the opportunity for input. Parents must understand the rationale behind the direction chosen. Taxpayers must be able to see where their money is going and the result. The Board must be aware of the inner workings of the schools in the county and be able to answer to the stakeholders in an informed manner. Information must be shared on a regular basis with everyone.
The allocation per student in NC does not meet the needs placed on a school system. The total amount spent on education is misleading in that it is not the amount of money for the classroom or to "educate" the student. The public school has been given so many additional duties through the years. Of course, nutritional needs are critical, mental health needs are critical, medical needs are critical, transportation needs are critical, and the list goes on. All these are needed to put the student in a seat ready to learn. However, all the critical things take money that limit actual classroom dollars. Let's agree on the amount for the classroom teaching and not pull from that for other things. These other needs should be funded separately by the state or county. In addition, NC should allocate the necessary funds for the Exceptional Children program and be able to realize that a threshold percentage will not be the same from county to county. School facilities are also way behind the need
Teacher's choose JCPS for different reasons. The community school approach enables involvement in the community and provides the community with school sponsored events. This provides teachers the opportunity to be a part of the community. This process in itself can indirectly gauge the satisfaction level enjoyed by the teacher. The most effective way to assess the level of satisfaction is simply from providing the opportunity for feedback and suggestions for improving everything from student success to school efficiency. As a Board member, I have made a commitment to be in every school in the county at least bimonthly to engage with the school staff for this reason. In addition, professional development opportunities should focus on actual needs of the teacher and be offered through a variety of modalities.
Pre-K is an important component of the educational process and should be available for all students.
Pre-K is important in preparing the student "to be a student". The educational system has advanced through the years. Technology has enabled students to be more prepared than ever when they enter school. Students are more advanced when they enter kindergarten as a result. However, when students have not had the opportunities in the home or through private Pre-K programs, they enter a step behind other students in all areas. When a student starts behind, the ability to "catch up" may be a small window. In order to make sure all students enter as close as possible to the same level, Pre-K programs are vital to bridge the gap. Of course, some students will be more prepared, but the goal is to minimize the gap as much as possible so all students can achieve early success. A lack of early success can lead to the student failing to reach their potential at each step. When students begin closer to the same level, the entire class benefits and can move to higher mastery levels.
It is important to understand that teachers can make more money in some neighboring counties with larger supplements. Therefore, it is important to offer other reasons to be a part of JCPS. The community school approach was important for me and I know it is for others. The support of extracurricular activities from the local communities makes for a "home" atmosphere. The individual attention available to our staff and the independence allowed to teach "your" students creates an ownership of the system. Teachers should be able to give input in county vision and initiatives and allowed to use their individual talents to meet the needs of the student. The problem with retaining teachers arises when they perceive a lack of support from administrators in the school and at the county office. The Board must also display leadership ability and support the school staff as well. When teachers feel that JCPS is no better than other systems, it should be expected that they will seek other opportun
Age (optional) 50
Position/philosophy statement “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” - Nelson Mandela
As a family physician in Johnston County for the last twenty years, I’ve seen thousands of adults and children from all walks of life giving me valuable insight on the way health behaviors and education are related. My experience as a physician will give the board a unique perspective when it comes to crafting policy, making decisions, and linking our educational mission to the overall health of our citizens.

It is also critical to have parents with children in the school system on our board. My three boys have had a wonderful experience in the Johnston County public schools from the elementary level through high school. They’ve had many excellent teachers, administrators, coaches and parent volunteers who spent countless hours shaping them into the young men they are today. As a way of “paying it forward” I want to contribute my time and energy to ensure all the students in the county have similar experiences with their neighborhood schools.
Honesty and integrity are essential traits for all professionals but especially for those in public service. Our constituents must trust our motives and decisions but we as a board have to earn that trust. Leadership should be above board in all of our dealings with the system superintendent, parents, students, school system employees, and the community as a whole. There should be no hint of impropriety or conflict of interest for anyone serving on the board.

As a physician, integrity is an essential component of my job every day. We pledge to be honest with our patients and they have to trust the information we are sharing with them. I will bring that same level of truthfulness to the board when I serve. The collective integrity of the board depends on each member exercising high ethical standards personally and professionally.

The economic fallout from the COVID19 pandemic will put every school system in the state in a difficult financial position. With both state and county tax revenues falling, budgets will be tight and difficult spending decisions will have to be made. More than ever the board of education must maintain close, engaged, working relationships with our state and county representatives in order to craft a workable budget. A budget based on per-pupil spending has been proposed by some on the current board and I believe this should be investigated further. This model would provide a funding formula based on student population that gives the county commissioners and board of education a reasonable starting point in future budget discussions along with consistency from year to year in budget projections.
The COVID19 pandemic has left teachers vacillating between feelings of frustration, fear, discouragement, and guarded optimism. These feelings are not unique to teachers in our county. Teachers all over the country are wrestling with the concept of how to get back to their classrooms safely. Teachers were first asked in the spring to pivot quickly to an online curriculum when the schools were shuttered for the remainder of the school year. They then waited in limbo throughout the summer to learn how school would open in the fall.

While some teachers are embracing a return to the classroom, others are more cautious, expressing concerns about their own health and that of their families. The end result is division between the various groups of educators based on their opinions about re-opening. The board must navigate the difficult task of hearing the concerns, making sure all teachers believe that their voices matter, and then synthesize the data and opinions into practical policy.
Pre-Kindergarten programs are of the utmost importance for the foundation of a healthy school system and community.
The education literature is clear that family dynamics and socioeconomic background play a significant role in the academic success of students. Pre-K programs represent an effort to give students an aptly named "head start" before entering elementary school. The consensus of educational studies is that preschool programs "leave children better prepared for school, especially in terms of their academic skill development". (Meloy, Gardner, Darling-Hammond, "Untangling the Evidence on Preschool Effectiveness", Jan 2019).

When compared to their peers who do not participate, children from preschool programs enjoy a host of benefits including improvement in early literacy and math skills, better preparation for starting elementary school, and a lower likelihood of grade retention. Moreover, the benefits carry over into adulthood as well including a greater likelihood of graduation, higher paying jobs, a lower likelihood of incarceration.
Teacher burnout and turnover is not only harmful to the students and schools but it's also a significant expense for the system so it's essential to have a plan that addresses these issues. Most discussions around teacher recruitment and retention start with teacher salaries. While it's extraordinarily important that we as a community, state and nation continue to advocate for competitive teacher salaries there are also other factors that draw teachers to a particular school or school system.

My wife was a teacher in the public schools and the years she most enjoyed her job were the years she worked for a strong principal. Giving schools strong principals who provide leadership, support and guidance makes a big difference in teacher satisfaction. Our system must continue to invest in training and leadership development of our principals. Meaningful professional development in which teachers can work with their peers to share best practices also enhance workplace morale.
Age (optional) 57
Contact Phone (919) 631-6659
email address pwooten883@aol.com
Position/philosophy statement Every decision that is made by a Board Of Education Member you have to ask yourself, how does it affect students in the class room
I have been blessed to serve on the Johnston County Public Schools Board of Education for the last 12 years. During that tenure, I have been able to develop relationships with all our community feeder patterns, our local county commissioners and our representatives in Raleigh. These relationships are key to communication, collaboration and transparency, which helps JCPS reach the goals of meeting the educational, social and emotional needs of all students. I am a product of Johnston County Public Schools and I'm still vested in the school system by having and wife that has been teaching in the system for over 30 years and also still have a student that will a senior this year. I'm honored to give back to a system that prepared me for life and I want to make sure all students have the many opportunities and choices that our system allowed me to have when I attended years ago. Past 30 years of banking experience has helped negotiating the finances this past year as Finance Chair.
-Transparency and open communication -Yearly continued education hours offered by North Carolina School Board Association each and every year. Minimum 12 hours per year -Open financial reporting on a monthly basis with county commissioners and board meeting (Fiscal Responsibility) -Being approachable and responsible with all stakeholders of the school system
1) State Bond Referendum for school construction is greatly needed across the State of North Carolina. This has been discussed for numerous years in Raleigh and no results. With the growth of Johnston County, the passage of this bond would allow Johnston County to build a couple of schools along with what we are already building with our local bond, which would help Johnston County catch up with our need for more classroom space in Johnston County. 2) Reduction in classroom size for K-3 is a good decision for learning environments at this crucial age, however the State mandated this change with no funding to accommodate more classroom space, mobiles or teachers to take care of the reduced class size of 16 to 18 students. Unfunded mandates are taking resources out of our students and teachers hands to properly educate our students. 3) Exceptional Children funding is insufficient from the State Level, which we are funded at 12.5% of our population, we need 17% to break even
Teachers need to feel appreciated all year, not just during Teacher Appreciation Week. Board Members have to be available to listen to concerns of teachers and address the concerns those concerns through policy adjustment, budgeting to ensure teachers have necessary resources and frequent conversations with Superintendent for his support as well. Professional Development is one of the necessary resources and must be funded with local dollars and grants to make sure our teachers have the resources and best practices to do their job. Professional Development should be determined by teachers who will be utilizing these tools to address the academic, social, and emotional needs of our students. Topics should be determined by our teachers.
Highly important for children to become acquainted to the educational environment and create a positive experience not only with instructors but also with their classmates. So yes, the importance scale ranks high.
Pre-K builds the foundation of success for our most vulnerable and poverty stricken population. Therefore, it ranks very high. Its goes way beyond childcare. All future academic success rest upon their language development during birth to 5 years old. Social skills are taught and reinforced. This not only makes K12 learning easier, it builds our future workforce done the line as students learn more. As a board member, I will lobby our General Assembly and County Commissioners for Pre-K funding now and in the future.
Recruiting and retaining teachers has never been more important or more difficult due to many factors, including the recent COVID related issues teachers are having to deal with today. Teachers must fell appreciated each and every year. The Teacher Working Conditions Survey is a valuable tool for identifying issues and assisting the Superintendent in adjusting processes so teachers work in an environment that recognizes and addresses barriers that keep teachers from fulfilling their desire to be effective with students in the classroom. When that culture is created, this becomes your best strategy for retaining teachers and attracting new teachers to join our JCPS family. Clear communication, providing the needed resources, and including our teachers in the decision making process conveys respect, which improves our teacher retention rate and creates a district culture conducive to teacher recruitment. Increased teacher pay from the State of NC is still a constant hurdle as well.