CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - As thousands of teachers are preparing to rally in Raleigh next week, Charlotte Mecklenburg school board members Carol Sawyer and Elyse Dashew plan to be two of the thousands alongside educators rallying at the State capitol on May 1.
“I am standing with teachers because it’s about our community’s children, as a parent, as a community member," says Sawyer.
Both say last year’s rally was a wakeup call for the state of North Carolina when it comes to education. Sawyer adds it made teachers take a hard look at their elected officials.
“I think statewide overall it woke people up and made us realize how much we’ve slipped in our schools and in our communities," says Dashew.
Slipping in areas like - teacher pay and health care - two of the five things teachers are rallying for. Other things include; Medicaid expansion, degree compensation, retirement benefits and more support staff.
“It’s all attainable if the legislators prioritize education over tax cuts," says Sawyer. “It’s all about priorities.”
“As an elected official, I do a better job when I listen to what my teachers say so I am going to there in support of them," says Dashew.
Sawyer says when it comes to teacher pay, statewide there were slight increases, but there is a long way to go. Already, CMS has passed a raise in next year’s budget.