The Belk Foundation would like to share a few insights on its investment of the NC Human Capital Roundtable, facilitated with the help of the Southern Regional Education Board.
We believe that the teaching profession faces significant challenges in terms of a reduced pipeline with serious retention issues, especially in the early years. The profession continues to be majority white and female, yet the student population is increasingly of color. There are few career advancement opportunities for teachers who choose to remain in the classroom. The licensure process remains complicated with effective teachers unable to become licensed. Furthermore, compensation is a significant issue, especially in the early years, and for teachers taking on additional work without appropriate compensation or promotion.
The Human Capital Roundtable is an example of how thought leaders can come together to propose new concepts that are then being vetted through the state’s open democratic process. North Carolina has an opportunity to design a system that invites diverse and capable educators into the profession, provides the support they deserve, and then offers options for them to grow in their career. We believe the current process of review and recommendation by the PEPSC commission and then review and approval by the NC State Board of Education is allowing for the engagement of key stakeholders. We believe there are many opportunities to strengthen the teaching profession and look forward to the work of PEPSC and the State Board of Education.