I have been associated with the North Carolina Center for Advancement of
Teaching since 1997, and have participated in over 25 of their enrichment
sessions for North Carolina Teachers over the years as a presenter.
As a Life Coach and Trainer for Community Action Opportunities, in
Asheville, NC, I work with struggling families who have the goal of
self-sufficiency. Invariably, education makes the difference in a family’s
ability to break cycles and become economically successful. It is education
that opens these doors of possibility. In my experience, our educational
system is the only mainstream institution we have that offers this promise
How does this relate to my concern that funding for NCCAT is now on the
budget chopping block? Teachers are at the heart of a responsive,
impassioned, smart, viable, and effective educational system. There is no
more demanding job in our society. On every level, every day, teachers are
asked to make influential decisions that impact our children and our future
in countless ways. It is a responsibility I am amazed they take on, for
little glory and low pay.
NCCAT is a small way our state has chosen to acknowledge our gratitude to
our teachers. It is an oasis where they can come, interact with new
colleagues, learn skills and hatch ideas, and be re-inspired. At NCCAT,
teachers are treated simply and well, fed and stimulated, and given the gift
of time away from the classroom to work on their professional development.
They are mentored, they make statewide friendships and networks, and they
leave with new dedication and insight that shows up in each of their
I know we are looking at extreme funding cutbacks. From my perspective,
times like these up the ante for excellence in the classroom. Now more than
ever we need teachers who can inspire excellence and a love of learning.
Please consider fully funding the North Carolina Center for the Advancement
of Teaching, so their good work can continue.