Dalton vs. McCrory on education

lynn.bonner@newsobserver.comOctober 7, 2012 

  • More information Walter Dalton vs. Pat McCrory The candidates on education Staff writer Lynn Bonner N.C. Pre-K Should the state tighten eligibility for its pre-kindergarten program? A proposal this year would have limited eligibility to children from families with incomes at or below the federal poverty level, which is $23,050 for a family of four. The upper income limit now is about $51,000 for a family of four. McCrory: Doesn’t know. Says N.C. Pre-K would be part of the larger evaluation of education to determine whether programs are achieving their goals. Dalton: Would not impose stricter income limits and would increase the budget to enroll an additional 7,000 children. Vouchers The state offers families of disabled children tax credits if they transfer their children from public to private school. Should the state establish a broader voucher or taxpayer-funded scholarship for public school students to attend private schools? McCrory: Supports some form of public taxpayer support for private education for students with disabilities and academically gifted students who can show public schools aren’t meeting their needs. Though he has not settled on specific parameters, McCrory said the state and counties should contribute to private school scholarships. Dalton: Opposes it. “That detracts from our mission in the public schools.” Performance pay Leading legislators want performance pay for teachers. Is that a good idea? McCrory: Supports performance pay that considers student improvement, peer evaluations and principal evaluations. Dalton: Supports performance pay but says it should go to “learning communities,” or groups of teachers, rather than individual teachers. University tuition and scholarships Should tuition play a larger role in funding of the state’s public universities and community colleges? How does that square with the state constitutional provision mandating higher education free from expense “as far as practicable”? McCrory: Wants an analysis of the cost of an undergraduate education and how much is subsidized and an examination of need-based financial aid and all its sources. Dalton: Tuition will increase with inflation, but tuition should not go up without a commensurate increase in need-based financial aid. “We should be proud of the affordability of higher education.”

N.C. Pre-K

Should the state tighten eligibility for its pre-kindergarten program? A proposal this year would have limited eligibility to children from families with incomes at or below the federal poverty level, which is $23,050 for a family of four. The upper income limit now is about $51,000 for a family of four.

McCrory: Doesn’t know. Says N.C. Pre-K would be part of the larger evaluation of education to determine whether programs are achieving their goals.

Dalton: Would not impose stricter income limits and would increase the budget to enroll an additional 7,000 children.

Vouchers

The state offers families of disabled children tax credits if they transfer their children from public to private school. Should the state establish a broader voucher or taxpayer-funded scholarship for public school students to attend private schools?

McCrory: Supports some form of public taxpayer support for private education for students with disabilities and academically gifted students who can show public schools aren’t meeting their needs. Though he has not settled on specific parameters, McCrory said the state and counties should contribute to private school scholarships.

Dalton: Opposes it. “That detracts from our mission in the public schools.”

Performance pay

Leading legislators want performance pay for teachers. Is that a good idea?

McCrory: Supports performance pay that considers student improvement, peer evaluations and principal evaluations.

Dalton: Supports performance pay but says it should go to “learning communities,” or groups of teachers, rather than individual teachers.

University tuition and scholarships Should tuition play a larger role in funding of the state’s public universities and community colleges? How does that square with the state constitutional provision mandating higher education free from expense “as far as practicable”?

McCrory: Wants an analysis of the cost of an undergraduate education and how much is subsidized and an examination of need-based financial aid and all its sources.

Dalton: Tuition will increase with inflation, but tuition should not go up without a commensurate increase in need-based financial aid. “We should be proud of the affordability of higher education.”

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