Other Voices

Other Voices

Progressive Voices Top Story

Trump refugee proposal takes the nation in precisely the wrong direction

A recent news story in Politico reports that Trump administration officials are considering dramatically reducing refugee admissions in the next fiscal year to a figure between 3,000 and 10,000, or perhaps, even as low as zero. This proposal is antithetical to what should be our American values, and deeply distressing to me on a personal level.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Will NC run with Supreme Court’s gerrymandering punt?

You have to wonder: What would U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. tell that proud North Carolina gerrymanderer David Lewis if they ever came face to face, just the two of them? OK, we can imagine the cynical answer. He’d tell his fellow conservative...

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Dear Sen. Tillis: Eastern NC needs you to take action on the climate crisis

Throughout North Carolina, the start of summer means late-night barbecues, well-earned vacations from work and breaks from school. But as we know all too well, this time of year also marks the start of hurricane season. Last year, ...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Watching Trump hold forth on the Fourth? No thanks.

Here’s one set of eyes and ears that won’t be fastened on President Trump’s speech on July 4 at the Lincoln Memorial. The aural and visual blackout has nothing to do with politics or ideology, though Trump’s policies and politics are 18th Century leftovers, at best. Everything a president says, good, bad, even ungrammatical, is important to the nation and the world. Forget that he lies, misrepresents and dissembles.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

The border is here: Fear-based immigration policies are wreaking havoc in NC

As images of the humanitarian crisis unfolding at the U.S. southern border continue to horrify every person with a pulse and Trump administration policies fail to ameliorate the crisis in any way, North Carolina policymakers seem intent on bringing the crisis home. Last week, the state Senate approved House Bill 370, a proposal that would force sheriffs to comply with every “detainer” request...

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Lawmakers bring forth another bad budget for kids

House and Senate leaders released their compromise budget proposal Tuesday. With a few exceptions, the proposal fails to include important funding and policy changes, including Medicaid expansion, that are sorely needed to help children and families thrive in North Carolina.   Here’s a quick rundown of what we’re most concerned about:

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

After outcry, Superintendent Mark Johnson tries to put a lid on reading program controversy

Last week I published a blog post detailing how NC Superintendent Mark Johnson ignored the recommendation of a committee of educators and made the unilateral decision to award the contract for a K-3 reading screener to a company called Istation. According former DPI employee Amy Jablonski, who headed the evaluation committee, Johnson’s selection of Istation disregarded the Request for Purchase (RFP) evaluation team’s advice that North Carolina schools should continue using the mClass screener which has been in place since 2013.  The change means moving from a model in which children read one-on-one with their teacher to one where their interaction is with a computer.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

How N.C. lawmakers spin local teacher supplements to pad teacher pay

This simple graphic is proudly shown on the Sen. Phil Berger-enabled propaganda website www.ncteacherraise.com. There are a lot of “spun” numbers and claims on this website that are easily debunked with more context and clarity. That figure as it stands...

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

How North Carolina budget proposals undercut “Raise the Age” reforms

North Carolina was the last state in the U.S. to end the automatic prosecution of juveniles of 16 or older as adults when in 2017 the NC General Assembly passed the Juvenile Justice Reinvestment Act (JJRA). As a result, 16 and 17 year olds charged with non-violent crimes on or after December 1, 2019 will be considered to be under the jurisdiction of the juvenile justice system, pursuant only to specific exceptions.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

State budget negotiators can and should choose a better path

The recent proposal from state Senate leaders for the next two-year state budget compromises North Carolina’s future by underinvesting in our communities while prioritizing the special interests of a select few. As House and Senate leaders confer on the final budget, let’s be clear that a different path — one that involves smart investments and better outcomes — is possible.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Nine ways in which “school choice” and its overzealous backers are harmful to NC public schools

At a recent Civitas Institute panel discussion, former state senator Joel Ford lamented that – because he supports charter schools – he gets labeled as “anti-public school.” Ford, now a board member of school choice propaganda mill Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina (PEFNC), appeared confused as to why critics throw that label at him.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Proposed state budget would deal new blows to the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause

In 1971, U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren Burger wrote an opinion in the landmark case Lemon v. Kurtzman that set forth a the three-pronged test lawmakers should use to avoid violating the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment of the Constitution, which states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” The three prongs of the test were these:

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Trump administration proposal to alter federal poverty guidelines could cause big problems for struggling North Carolinians

Federal poverty levels have been around since the 1960s and they are one of main drivers of whether a household is eligible for certain federal programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (also known as “SNAP” and “food stamps”), Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, Head Start, the National School Lunch Program, and the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Ten reasons our families refuse to participate in NC’s End of Grade testing

The North Carolina public school end-of-year testing window is now officially open. With this season, comes dozens of hours of children sitting, practice-testing, reviewing, and re-testing. Children as young as eight years old will test for 3-4 hours with no break on consecutive days; Some students with an extended time accommodation will test even longer. This reality calls to question the efficacy and developmental appropriateness of our state’s testing practices. Prior to End Of Grade testing (EOG), classroom teachers already have plenty of indicators for each student’s proficiency in reading and math. Yet, children are tested at the end of the school year, when it’s no longer possible to correct the course.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

NC is making a big mistake by failing to prepare for the next recession

We aren’t in an economic downturn yet, but economists who find themselves marveling at the historic duration of the current national expansion are urging policymakers to prepare for one now. Key to that preparation will be smart public investments that minimize the harm to communities and families and, in turn, the long-term growth trajectory of the economy.

...
Read more 0
Progressive Voices Top Story

Gentrification: What it really means and how we must respond

Downtown Raleigh recently made the front page of the New York Times as an exemplar of gentrification – the process that dislocates traditional low-income residents, typically people of color, and changes the social fabric of a neighborhood. South Park, the historically Black Raleigh neighborhood near Shaw University...

...
Read more 0

Send this to a friend