Press Releases

State Superintendent-Elect Catherine Truitt today announced her first wave of new hires to the Department of Public Instruction (DPI). Truitt said the new staff members will be essential to the operation and success of the department and for its critical support of schools across North Carolina. State Board of Education Chairman Eric Davis and Vice Chairman Alan Duncan said they welcomed Truitt’s additions to the staff.
Digital teaching and learning in North Carolina is getting a boost from $1.2 million in grants this year to 12 school districts and charter schools to fund innovative improvement initiatives.
Teachers in North Carolina and France are already benefiting from a new partnership between the N.C. Department of Public Instruction and a French regional school district that aims to foster educational activities to support teaching and learning of the respective languages and cultures. 
Three North Carolina public schools today were named National Blue Ribbon Schools for 2020 by U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. The three schools are among 367 schools nationwide recognized this year for their overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps.
During a press conference today, Gov. Roy Cooper announced lifting restrictions and allowing districts and charters to return PreK – 5 students to school buildings operating under Plan A beginning Oct. 5. In June, schools were directed to develop a plan to return students to buildings following the abrupt closure to schools in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"It’s great news today that we are a step closer to providing the option of in-person learning to families who want their children to return to school. While the Governor, the State Board of Education, and I have our differences, I join with them today to encourage local school board members to take advantage of this change and open all schools safely. I thank the many parents and teachers across North Carolina who have been vocal advocates on this important issue.
Reflecting a similar trend nationally, the performance of North Carolina’s high school class of 2020 on the SAT college entrance exam slipped from that of the previous year’s graduates, according to results released today by The College Board.
State Superintendent Mark Johnson has announced the K-3 reading diagnostics that local school districts have chosen to use this academic year.  Earlier this year, Superintendent Johnson and DPI developed a plan to allow districts to select their own diagnostic tools from a list of approved vendors. As a result, five vendors were approved for local districts to choose from.
North Carolina’s four-year cohort high school graduation rate increased to 87.6 percent with the class of 2020, up from 86.5 percent for the 2019 graduating class. Since 2006, when North Carolina first reported a cohort graduation rate – then 68.3 percent – this critical measure of student success has improved by more than 19 percentage points.
Kisha Clemons, principal of Shuford Elementary School in the Newton-Conover City School district, was named the 2020 Wells Fargo North Carolina Principal of the Year at an awards luncheon today in Cary.
NC DPI has been made aware of concerns and press reports regarding a State Board of Education member’s recent Twitter comments equating swing voters and white moderates to white supremacists.  Please find attached a letter from Superintendent Johnson addressing the issue.
Nearly three dozen charter schools across North Carolina have been awarded five-year grants ranging from $300,000 to $900,000 by the N.C. Department of Public Instruction to attract and enroll more educationally disadvantaged students.
More than 50 school districts across North Carolina will be replacing older school buses with new, more environmentally friendly models under the state’s initial share of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s settlement with Volkswagen for unlawfully cheating on vehicle emissions. 
The U.S. Department of Education has awarded the N.C. Department of Public Instruction a $17.6 million grant to develop innovative instructional approaches to better meet student needs during disruptions to schooling such as the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Maureen M. Stover, a science teacher at Cumberland International Early College High School, was named the 2020 Burroughs Wellcome Fund North Carolina Teacher of the Year during an awards luncheon today held outside a Cary hotel with a small group of attendees. Stover was selected from a field of nine finalists representing the state’s eight education districts and charter schools. 
Today, the State Board of Education approved the N.C. Department of Public Instruction’s Lighting Our Way Forward: North Carolina's Guidebook for Reopening Public Schools and a summary with navigation links to the full document. The operational strategies were developed by the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, in conjunction with the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, teachers, support staff, local education leaders, and others, to assist the state’s public schools and communities as they develop reopening plans for the 2020-21 school year.
More than 900,000 North Carolina students rely on the nutritious meals and snacks served during the school year through the School Breakfast, School Lunch, and Afterschool Meals programs. But hunger doesn't take a summer break, especially this summer, when social distancing is necessary to help prevent the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
The State Board of Education approved the allocation of $70 million today from federal CARES Act funds for school districts and charter schools to provide summer programs aimed at helping elementary students who were in kindergarten through fourth grades during the 2019-20 school year needing extra instruction in reading or math because of school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Meeting while demonstrations nationwide continue over the death of George Floyd, members of the N.C. State Board of Education today issued an urgent call to action to eliminate inequities and racism from the state’s public schools. Board Chairman Eric Davis opened the board’s regular monthly meeting by invoking Floyd’s name as an alarming wake-up call that exposes the “systemic practices which continue to plague our nation and result in the physical and mental deaths many black and brown citizens experience every day.”
The board’s action follows COVID-19 legislation by the General Assembly earlier this month that mandated the development of the remote instruction plans to ensure quality teaching and learning outside the traditional classroom. The legislation required that the plans address a number of issues, ranging from parent involvement and effective instruction to equitable access and provisions for monitoring student attendance.