Press Releases

North Carolina students and their families should be recognized for their remarkable resilience and perseverance throughout this pandemic, and the UNC System and NCDPI understand the unique challenges ahead.
North Carolina is home to a large population of active duty, guard, reserve, and veteran armed services members, and the state’s public schools reflect that. The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction has launched the Purple Star Award Designation initiative this school year to recognize the state’s strong military presence and its support for military families. The Purple Star designation is awarded to schools that demonstrate military-friendly practices and a commitment to military students and families.
Some North Carolina high school seniors are going to have an unforgettable graduation this spring. State and Cabarrus County school officials, along with the Charlotte Motor Speedway, have announced plans to hold several graduation ceremonies for the Cabarrus County Class of 2020 at the speedway.  The events will allow students to participate in an in-car graduation ceremony.  Students will receive their diplomas at the start /finish line on the track.  State Superintendent Mark Johnson made the announcement today.
Tuesday May 5, 2020 is Teacher and School Staff Appreciation Day, and NC Public Schools are asking people to show their appreciation statewide in a special way.  Among many other options, families can display lights in windows, on porches or in their yards to acknowledge their appreciation for teachers and staff.  Beginning at 8:20 pm on Tuesday, families are asked to shine the light for 20 minutes. 
The N.C. State Board of Education took additional steps today in response to the state’s continuing efforts to stem the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 has necessitated innovation. Educators throughout North Carolina, without hesitation, are answering this call. It is with great admiration that we express appreciation for district and school leaders for providing vision and direction, teachers for serving as education’s first responders by maintaining critical connections while nurturing students’ social and emotional well-being. Countless child nutrition, transportation, and other support staff are ensuring our most vulnerable students continue to receive nutrition meals.
Responding to continuing challenges caused by the COVID-19 school closure, the State Board of Education today approved measures addressing student grading for the remainder of the school year, incomplete teacher evaluations and $380 million in additional emergency funding from the state.
Schools in the Wake and Cumberland county public school districts are among 39 schools nationwide named today as U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools for their efforts to reduce environmental impact, improve health and wellness, and ensure effective sustainability education.
The North Carolina State Board of Education voted today to ask the N.C. General Assembly to waive certain state accountability requirements for the current academic year because of statewide school closures ordered last month to slow the spread of COVID-19.
In consultation with the Department of Public Instruction, UNC-TV started today to provide programming for students in grades four through 12 designed to complement existing remote learning efforts from the state’s public schools.
The State Board of Education took steps on three different fronts today to support schools across North Carolina coping with the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This afternoon Gov. Roy Cooper announced that the closure of public school facilities as instructional settings for K-12 students will be extended through May 15.
State Superintendent Mark Johnson today praised the efforts last week by schools and educators to respond to the COVID-19 crisis that has shuttered schools statewide, and he acknowledged that today’s decision to keep schools closed until May 15 will require even more from everyone – teachers, school staff, and families.
The North Carolina State Board of Education voted unanimously today to seek a one-year waiver from the U.S. Department of Education for federal student testing and accountability requirements for the 2019-20 school year because of school closures ordered to combat COVID-19.
While schools are closed to students, yellow school buses remain in operation in many areas of the state, delivering meals and instructional materials to students.
As you know, on March 14, 2020, Gov. Roy Cooper entered Executive Order No. 117 Prohibiting Mass Gatherings and Directing the Statewide Closure of K-12 Public Schools to Limit the Spread of COVID-19. Section 2 of the Executive Order directs that "all public schools close for students effective Monday, March 16, 2020, until March 30, 2020, unless extended beyond that date."
Digital Teaching and Learning in North Carolina’s public schools will benefit from a new round of competitive grants approved Thursday by the State Board of Education.
After record-high completion on the last NC Teacher Working Conditions Survey, State Superintendent Mark Johnson sets the goal for North Carolina to be the top in the nation for completion rate this year.
The student culinary team from Apex High School in Wake County won first place for the second year running in the 2020 North Carolina Jr. Chef Competition, held Friday at Johnson & Wales University in Charlotte. The team’s banh mi with turkey meatballs and slaw brought the trophy home for Sydney Brock, Demaree Persson and Molly Todd.
Rachel O’Kelley arrived at John A. Holmes High School today like any other; ready to teach several science courses in the small school in Edenton in rural northeastern North Carolina. The day will end for her like no other.