For Teachers, It's About More Than A Pay Raise

Nov 14, 2019

Durham Public Schools
Credit Durham Public Schools

The President of Durham Association of Educators says future demonstrations by teachers will depend on how lawmakers react to their calls for a comprehensive budget agreement that meets their demands.

Michelle Burton, a librarian at Spring Valley Elementary, says teachers across North Carolina don't just want a pay raise.

She says they're are also picketing for health coverage for more low-income North Carolinians, and a guaranteed $15 minimum wage for everyone who works in schools, including custodians and cafeteria workers.

"This is about looking out for our children holistically. Not necessarily just wanting more money for teachers," she said. "Yes, teachers deserve a pay raise, but our families and our children need to be taken care of as well.

On Wedensday, teachers from several school districts − including Wake County and Mecklenburg County − staged walk-ins. Last week teachers in Durham picketed at schools throughout the city, including Lakewood Elementary and Riverside High.