skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Friday, December 1, 2023

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

On World AIDS Day, New Mexico activists say more money is needed for prevention; ND farmers still navigate corporate land-ownership policy maze; Unpaid caregivers in ME receive limited financial grants.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Secretary of State Antony Blinken urges Israel to protect civilians amid Gaza truce talks, New York Rep. George Santos defends himself as his expected expulsion looms and CDC director warns about respiratory illness as flu season begins.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Congress has iced the Farm Bill, but farmer advocates argue some portions are urgent, the Hoosier State is reaping big rewards from wind and solar, and opponents react to a road through Alaska's Brooks Range, long a dream destination for hunters and anglers.

NC Faith Leaders Launch Dialogue on Value of Public Schools

play audio
Play

Wednesday, October 2, 2019   

RALEIGH, N.C. – A faith group hopes to get people talking about the importance of public schools, as some counties continue to see a rise in charter-school openings and drop in public-school enrollment.

The North Carolina Council of Churches is launching a series of public discussions across the state.

Allison Mahaley, who chairs the council's education committee, said she hopes public dialogue will reinvigorate the debate for public schools and get local communities thinking about what it means for every child to have fair shot at a good education.

"We believe we can bring the community back together around fully resourcing public schools," she said, "so that if people still opt for a private school or a charter school or something else, they can see that their advocacy for public schools is good for the common good."

Mahaley said the council plans to host dialogue trainings in rural school districts in the eastern and western parts of the state.

Proponents of charter schools have said they increase options for parents who want the best for their children, but educator Dr. Kashi Bazemore said "shopping around" for schools doesn't circumvent long-standing social inequities. Bazemore grew up in Bertie County and returned home to open Heritage Collegiate Leadership Academy, a charter school, in 2014.

"I was once a very strong supporter of school choice," she said. "What we're seeing in North Carolina is a pattern of closures for minority-founded charter schools."

Heritage served primarily African-American students living in rural communities. Two years ago, the state Board of Education voted to close the school, citing poor academic performance. It closed in 2018.

Bazemore said she believes Heritage was unfairly targeted, and called the experience of running a charter school "eye-opening."

"I've come full circle," she said, "and what I believe is that we have to invest in our traditional public schools, first and foremost; that we've got to do better by teachers."

Nationwide, charter-school enrollment has jumped. Between 2000 and 2015, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, the percentage of public school students who attended charter schools swelled from 1% to 6%, and the number of charter schools increased from nearly 2,000 to more than 6,000.

Disclosure: North Carolina Council of Churches contributes to our fund for reporting on Environment, Hunger/Food/Nutrition, Immigrant Issues, Social Justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
According to the National Family Farm Coalition, the average U.S. farmland value is now $3,800 per
acre, the highest since the 1970s. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

North Dakota's farming landscape is seeing policy shifts dealing with corporate ownership of agricultural interests. Now, there's fresh debate at the …


Social Issues

play sound

Advocates for unpaid family caregivers in Maine say they'll need continued support beyond the recently passed paid family and medical leave program…

Social Issues

play sound

The Students for Justice in Palestine chapters at the University of Florida and the University of South Florida are filing lawsuits against the deacti…


An estimated 40% of recent college graduates in the U.S. are underemployed, according to Statista. (Adobe Stock)

play sound

A new report from WGU Labs, a nonprofit affiliate of Western Governors University based in Millcreek, Utah, is shedding light on the importance of …

Social Issues

play sound

Many older residents of Washington state are facing strains on their budgets -- and the government programs that could assist them are underused…

The Thrive Indianapolis Annual Report 2022 says Indianapolis has been recognized as a Tree City USA for 35 consecutive years. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

Bloomington and Indianapolis are getting some international recognition for the work they're doing to help the environment. The two have been named …

Health and Wellness

play sound

New Mexico activists are tapping today's World AIDS Day, Dec. 1, to announce they'll ask the State Legislature to provide more money for treatment …

play sound

Bipartisan legislation that proposes the installation of solar panels in schools across Pennsylvania awaits a vote in the state Senate. The Solar …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021