The North Carolina state budget was passed and signed by the governor on Sept. 18. Drivers education funding and other school-related budget items were among the items most closely watched. The funding for teacher assistants was one of the items potentially on the chopping block, but the final budget did pass with funding still in place.
“I am pleased that the General Assembly decided to fund teacher assistant positions,” said Yadkin County Schools Superintendent Dr. Todd Martin. “Teacher assistants are vitally important to what we do in our lower grades. Gone are the days when assistants simply took roll, made copies, and monitored the cafeteria and playground. Today, teacher assistants, while still helping to monitor students, act in an instructional capacity, helping classroom teachers instruct students in learning how to read, write, and perform mathematical operations. They are so very important to helping out younger students build a solid foundation for learning.”
Martin said there were three teacher assistant positions within the county school system which did not get filled this year as they were awaiting word on the funding.
“Right now we are leaving these three positions unfilled until we receive final allotments from the state,” Martin said.
Funding for drivers education was another item potentially up for funding cuts or elimination, but that too survived.
“I am also pleased that our drivers education program will be funded,” Martin added. “We have very capable staff teaching our students how to safely operate motor vehicles. I just think it makes sense for us to continue to be able to help our students learn traffic laws and safety and the ins and outs of operating a vehicle on the road.”
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter @RippleReporterK.