July 29, 2020/Media, Press

Editorial: Berger is No Friend of Public Education

“We don’t understand why Berger seems to demand a one-size fits all solution over the flexibility Cooper’s plan offers local districts.”

Raleigh – In a new piece published today, the Capitol Broadcasting Company’s Editorial board slammed Republican Senate Majority Leader Phil Berger for his irresponsible push to fully reopen schools in North Carolina even as case numbers in the state continue to rise.

“If Berger wants to provide leadership for quality public education, as our state constitution requires, he needs to be the loudest voice for adoption of the Leandro road map,” wrote the CBC Editorial Board.  “We don’t understand why Berger seems to demand a one-size fits all solution over the flexibility Cooper’s plan offers local districts.”

Berger’s push to reopen schools without safety precautions — even as he refuses to pass legislation that would increase education funding and give schools the resources they need to keep students safe — is just the latest example of his years-long crusade against North Carolina’s public education system. 

CBC: Editorial: Support public schools. Don’t drive kids away

  • State Senate leader Phil Berger probably thinks he’s talking a good game about school spending. But he’s not fooling anyone. He sounds like he wants to give up on public education and send kids to private schools or privately-run schools – and use taxpayer dollars to do it.
  • “Private Schools Are Open. Here’s How to Apply for an Opportunity Scholarship,” he proclaimed. “The public school establishment is failing the very children it is supposed to serve.”
  • What? Phil Berger IS the “public school establishment.” He as much as anyone in North Carolina’s government leadership – including Gov. Roy Cooper or Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson or House Speaker Tim Moore – is responsible to the degree that our public schools deliver on their mission or don’t. 
  • Regardless of his pronouncements on school spending, the reality is North Carolina fails to deliver on its constitutional promise to the children of North Carolina.
  • It is a fact, determined after years of litigation and argument by evidence as ruled upon by our state’s courts.
  • While Berger’s quick to send students and money away from the school’s he’s obligated to support, he refuses to acknowledge and adopt a thoughtful and comprehensive roadmap to improve public schools developed by the plaintiffs and defendants in the landmark Leandro case.
  • Want to know what is needed for a quality education? Just read the Leandro Report. 
  • It has been clear since March that the COVID-19 virus would have an immense impact on every aspect of life in the state. Yet legislative leaders have squandered more time and effort on opportunities for unproductive partisan extracurriculars rather than working to develop coordinated and effective approaches to educating children and working to keep them – and their classroom teachers – safe.