Havelock teachers join statewide protests over education cuts

tucker creek teachers

Teacher Chadwick Howard, right, and other Tucker Creek Middle School teachers, wore red and joind together after school for a "walk-in" to protest what they say is poor teacher pay and other budget issues relative to schools in North Carolina.

Drew C. Wilson/Havelock News
Published: Monday, November 4, 2013 at 06:07 PM.

Walk-in or walk-out. Call it what you want. For Tucker Creek Middle School teacher Chadwick Howard, low teacher pay means one thing, a second job.

Howard was among many North Carolina teachers wearing red on Monday to protest actions by the General Assembly and Gov. Pat McCrory on issues of pay, tenure and budget cuts that they say hurt the state’s schools.

Howard, for instance, left school Monday to go to his second job, one he has taken up to make ends meet because he said his low teacher salary won’t pay the bills.

“I have to go to the convention center to work until 1 a.m. at my second job, which I worked until 1 a.m. last night, and I’ll do the same thing on Tuesday night and Wednesday night, working the Marine balls, because I haven’t had a pay increase in six years and everything else has increased,” Howard said.

Howard said he is doing what has to be done as a teacher to make ends meet.

“Many of us are having to take up second jobs or third jobs, and that takes away from what we do here sometimes,” Chadwick said. “It’s not fair at all.

“When I talked to the legislators a couple of years ago when Bev Perdue was in office, they always said that she was the problem and once she was out of office, things would change, but things definitely didn’t change for us teachers. They said they would do more for teachers and work harder for teachers, the Republican legislators that I talked to, and that isn’t what happened when they took control of the Senate and the House, in my opinion.”

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