Last week, the Education Commission of the States claimed that North Carolina is attempting to make “education more political than what it is today” through new legislation that was filed in the short summer session for the General Assembly.
This bill, House Bill 1173, is a proposed amendment to the state constitution that would overhaul and expand the North Carolina Board of Education. If it were passed, each congressional district would elect a representative to the North Carolina Board of Education every four years.
But would this increase political tensions in North Carolina’s education system?
The Chalkboard Review staff have reviewed this claim and House Bill 1173, and have found the Education Commission of the States’ statement:
Currently, the lieutenant governor, treasurer, and eleven members appointed by the governor comprise the committee. However, this bill desires to add the Superintendent of Public Instruction and add three new members to coincide with each of North Carolina’s fourteen congressional districts. These members would subsequently be elected by the constituents of one of the fourteen districts to four-year terms to the North Carolina Board of Education.
Put simply, the bill intends to have the fourteen board representatives reflect the desires of North Carolina families rather than have bureaucrats who solely wish to act on behalf of the governor’s education policy agenda.
Therefore, the bill does not increase the politicization of the classroom, but rather diverts power away from the governor’s political wishes regarding educational decisions at the state level.