Wake Senate candidates correct the record on teacher pay

GOP ads take credit for work of local school boards, ignore their education cuts

RALEIGH, N.C. – Susan Evans and Gil Johnson corrected the record today about recent Republican television ads which distort the truth on the General Assembly’s record on teacher pay and education funding.

Evans and Johnson are candidates for North Carolina Senate Districts 17 (Southwestern Wake County, currently represented by Tamara Barringer) and 18 (Eastern Wake and all of Franklin County, currently represented by Chad Barefoot), respectively.

They are also current members of the respective Wake and Franklin Boards of Education. They know first-hand the local impacts of the detrimental decisions the Republican legislative majority has made in recent years.

“For the last six years, the Republicans we’re working to replace in the General Assembly have voted to reduce public education funding and have failed to provide for our teachers,” said Johnson. “As a result, North Carolina now ranks 41st in the country in teacher pay, and as a place for teachers to work, we rank 50th.”

On top of that, the Republican ads’ claims about teacher pay lack context and claim credit for supplemental salary increases which are provided by individual school boards, not the state.

“They disingenuously roll locally funded supplements into the statewide average salary they brag about, when they had no role in providing those supplements,” said Evans. “In reality, local school boards like Wake’s and Franklin’s are boosting teacher pay because the state isn’t doing its job to pay our teachers what they deserve.”

Teacher compensation is not the only respect in which the GOP majority is leaving our kids and teachers behind. Teachers and families must increasingly spend more out-of-pocket on basic supplies. And funding to replace out-of-date textbooks and old technology is almost nonexistent.

As a result, inflation-adjusted per-pupil spending is now below where it was before the Great Recession. That is a particular problem when North Carolina’s student population continues to grow, requiring more funding every year, not less.