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Speaker Tillis misleads reporters on charter school “negotiations”

[1]In today’s press conference at the General Assembly with Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger, House Speaker Thom Tillis said the House would not be moving forward with the charter school deregulation bill [2] this week because the Republican sponsors and supporters are “making good progress,” “spending more time with the minority caucus,” and are hoping to make the proposal into “something that is truly a bipartisan bill.” He also said that they were doing their best to “get all stakeholders in the mix.”

The statements can be found around the 5-6 minute mark in this video on WRAL.com [3].

If Tillis really believes what he said, he’s got a pretty interesting definition of “bipartisan” and “all stakeholders.” 

Tillis’ people are not, for instance, including or reaching out to the House Democrats’ point person on the matter and one of the state’s most thoughful and best-informed public servants, Rep. Rick Glazier of Cumberland County.

Glazier, the former chair of the House Committee on Education during past General Assemblies and the lead sponsor of the House Democratic alternative to Senate Bill 8 [4], told Policy Watch today that he has not been approached to be a part of any negotiations around SB 8.

Inquiries to some of the advocates from the education arena — including the N.C. Association of Educators — produced similar mystified responses. Brian Lewis of NCAE said his organization has not been approached either.

Two notes to the House Speaker:

#1 – It’s one thing to be polished and affable and make far right ideas seem reasonable.

#2- It’s another to govern with honesty and integrity and to speak the real truth and not play word games in public forums.

You may have #1 down, but you definitely need to brush up on #2.