Press Releases

In today’s meeting of the State Board of Education, Superintendent Catherine Truitt presented her overarching vision and three key priorities to transform public education in North Carolina: literacy, testing and accountability, and human capital. Truitt said these three priorities will guide the Department of Public Instruction’s immediate efforts to address the effects of COVID-19, including learning loss, while also laying the groundwork to achieve her long-term vision: every student deserves a highly-qualified, excellent teacher in every classroom.
State Superintendent Catherine Truitt, State Board of Education Chairman Eric Davis and Vice-Chairman Alan Duncan today unveiled their joint budget priorities, which will be discussed in greater detail during this Thursday’s State Board meeting.  These joint budget priorities reflect Truitt’s vision for public education in the state while also aligning closely with the board’s strategic priorities. These budget requests are critical to North Carolina’s COVID recovery plan as well as casting a long-term vision for the future of education in the state. 
Maureen Stover, the 2020 Burroughs Wellcome North Carolina Teacher of the Year, has been selected as one of four finalists for the 2021 National Teacher of the Year. The finalists were announced today by the Council of Chief State School Officers, which facilitates the prestigious recognition program.
Nine teachers from across North Carolina have been selected as the state’s regional Teachers of the Year for their dedication, innovation and ability to inspire students to achieve.
Nearly 1 million North Carolina public school students were eligible last year to receive free or reduced-priced meals at school through the National School Lunch Program. Many of these students rely on the nutritious meals available through the school nutrition programs as their primary source of food during the school day.
N.C. Superintendent of Public Instruction Catherine Truitt was officially sworn in as the state's elected leader of K-12 education during today's inauguration with Gov. Roy Cooper and the nine members of the Council of State.
North Carolina Superintendent Mark Johnson has announced that $60 million in grant funds from the Needs-Based Public School Capital Fund will be awarded this year to school districts in Bladen, Carteret, Catawba, Cleveland, and Harnett counties. The grant awards will allow for construction of new school buildings in these economically distressed areas. 
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.