Education Oversight Chair’s Prediction Falls Flat on its Face

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ESC jobs report shows fewer government jobs in September

RALEIGH — Before a meeting of the Education Oversight Committee on Oct. 4, Co-Chair Senator Jerry Tillman of Randolph County defended the state budget, reiterating the promise that lawmakers made to protect teachers and teacher assistants – despite evidence to the contrary. Sen. Tillman even went a step further, claiming all the teachers that had been laid off were being rehired.

Sen. Tillman: “Check the ESC report that’s coming out October 21st, and you will see that there are few if any teacher positions lost, or teacher assistants.”

The NC Employment Security Commission report released today indicates 13,700 fewer government jobs over the past month, proving Sen. Tillman’s prediction wrong.

“Sen. Tillman ought to put away his crystal ball, and instead do his job by getting the teachers back in the classroom,” said Gerrick Brenner, Executive Director of Progress NC. “Lawmakers attempts to deny the harmful cuts they made to education or to blame others for teacher layoffs are losing credibility by the day.”

During budget debates back in June, House Speaker Thom Tillis said, “We have a budget that restores all K-12 education funding for teachers and teachers assistants. The minute this budget gets signed, those folks don’t have to worry about being out of a job.” [Press Conference, 6/1/10]

Also in June, Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger said, “Governor, you said you wanted full funding for teachers and teachers assistants. In this budget, you got that.” [YouTube, 6/10/2011]

But the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction reports numbers which prove these promises above to be utter nonsense. DPI reports:

1,853 teachers and teacher assistants were laid off due to state budget cuts, and
4,300 teacher and teacher assistant positions were eliminated.

“Today’s ESC report is more evidence that lawmaker’s aren’t shooting straight with the people of North Carolina,” said Brenner.


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