BY PATTY WILLIAMS North Carolina’s public schools boast an abundance of riches. Yet, we all know there’s always room for continuous improvement. Public Schools First NC is organizing a special event to help answer the question, “How can we keep our public schools strong”?
An outstanding group of education experts will join together on May 3rd for a statewide forum, exploring the issues, innovations, and solutions that can help to strengthen North Carolina’s public schools. North Carolinians who care about public education are invited to listen, learn, ask questions, get answers, and then roll up our sleeves.
The day will begin with a Legislative Roundtable featuring Senator Josh Stein and Representatives Rosa Gill and Paul Stam, who will provide an update and perspective on pre-K – 12 public education in North Carolina.
Keynote speaker David Kirp will share his insights about what it takes to create strong public schools. Kirp is the James D. Marver Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley and author of Improbable Scholars: The Rebirth of a Great American School System a Strategy for America’s Schools.
During the forum, public education experts will discuss:
- effective innovation within the public school system, including some creative ideas for the future.
- funding & accountability issues, including how NC compares to other states, steps that may be taken to deal with existing inequities, and measures to ensure that public dollars are well spent within the public school system.
- the necessary ingredients for a high quality teaching environment.
- the strengths of North Carolina’s teaching force and some of the challenges teachers currently face.
Forum participants will include:
- Suzzette Acree, Teacher, Wake County Public Schools
- Barnett Barry, CEO, Center for Teaching Quality
- Nora Carr, Chief of Staff, Guilford County Schools
- Karyn Dickerson, NC Teacher of the Year (invited)
- Edward Fiske, education writer and consultant, former education editor, New York Times
- Minnie Forte-Brown, Vice Chair, Durham Public Schools
- Tony Habit, President, North Carolina New Schools
- Mike Ward, President of The MEWs Educational Consulting, Inc. and former State Superintendent of Public Instruction of North Carolina
- Mark Jewell, Vice President, North Carolina Association of Educators
- Helen Ladd, Distinguished Professor, Sanford School of Public Policy, Duke University
- Keith Poston, President and Executive Director, Public School Forum of NC
- Philip Price, Chief Financial Officer, North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
- David Reese, President and CEO, East Durham Children’s Initiative
- Joel Rosch, Senior Research Scholar, Center For Child and Family Policy, Duke University
Consider attending Keeping NC Public Schools Strong. The event is free and open to the public. Registration begins at 8:00 a.m. and sessions run from 9:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. A block of hotel rooms has been reserved for travelers from across the state. Tell your friends and attend as a group. Together, we can keep NC’s public schools strong!