Teaching in North Carolina

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by MrD, May 20, 2020.

  1. MrD

    MrD Guest

    May 20, 2020

    Hi everyone,

    My wife and I were teachers in Florida. We found that there were a lot of children with IEPs and behavior plans in our classes and we never got much support from the state when they needed it. Our friends up out of state also get paid better.

    We haven't taught out of state before, but is teaching in North Carolina any different? From what we've found, there seems to be smaller school districts, private christian schools, and even Teacher Assistant positions here. Does anyone know if it's better in NC or pretty much the same everywhere.

    We appreciate you sharing your experiences with us. Thank you!
     
  2.  
  3. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    5,229
    Likes Received:
    1,592

    May 20, 2020

    I haven't heard anything good about teaching in NC but I"m sure others can chime in!
     
  4. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Messages:
    3,934
    Likes Received:
    1,916

    May 20, 2020

    I have only ever heard bad things about teaching in NC. But truthfully, what you described is the norm in public schools everywhere. I’m not sure you can escape IEPs, behavior problems, or relatively low pay in any state, unless you go to a private school or find some gem of a school somewhere.
     
    Caesar753 likes this.
  5. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    5,229
    Likes Received:
    1,592

    May 20, 2020

    I think I remember hearing things about NC schools not having unions, lower than average pay except in certain areas, not treating teachers fairly (maybe because there are no unions)??
     
  6. MrD

    MrD Guest

    May 20, 2020

    I see that teachers unions are illegal here? So what do you do if your falsely accused by a parent and need the union to support your case against the state. In Florida we get a union rep and even access to lawyers. Are teachers just thrown under the buss

    Thank you any NC teachers who can answer.
     
  7. MrD

    MrD Guest

    May 20, 2020

    Local Christian Schools there won’t give much pay but I would hope that the students are more respectful and behaved coming from a different environment than the public schools.
     
  8. MrD

    MrD Guest

    May 20, 2020

    IE - A friends’ Student in Florida put on XXXtentacion (Rapper) with his friends then cursed out the sub. Sent to principal and came back with a coloring page...eight year old student doing this. In other words most Intermediate kids act like mini high schoolers now.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 20, 2020
  9. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Messages:
    14,606
    Likes Received:
    2,713

    May 20, 2020

    I can’t imagine a scenario where I would voluntarily teach in NC. My in-laws are from there and we considered moving there for a while, until we did our research and learned just how poorly the teachers there are treated.
     
  10. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,376
    Likes Received:
    808

    May 20, 2020

    I have taught in NC. I have taught in Florida. The pay in NC is terrible, but it is a tiny bit (and I do mean tiny bit) better than Florida.

    There are no unions in NC -- they are against the law. So you won't find the duty-free lunches and other protections that you find in Florida. Some districts have better options than others. Some work with the "associations" (that's what they call the NEA and such in states that prohibit unions.) Many school districts don't.

    NC is very different from other states in one way. They have a state-wide pay scale. Public schools in NC do not set their own pay scales, like they do in other states. Every public school teacher in NC makes the exact same amount, regardless of the district. They do, however, offer "supplements" to districts in very expensive areas -- so while your pay in an expensive city will exactly the same as in a low-cost-of-living rural area, in the expensive city, teachers may get an extra supplement that is paid for by the locality. You can see the state pay scale at https://files.nc.gov/dpi/documents/fbs/finance/salary/schedules/2019-20schedules.pdf

    For example, a new teacher with a bachelors in NC will make $35,000. A teacher with a bachelor's with 10 years of experience will make $45,000. A teacher with a master's and 10 years of experience will receive $49,500. Some of the more expensive cities offer extra services to their teachers -- such as assistance with finding apartments and homes, and gym memberships. They do this to attract more teachers, because they can't increase the pay.

    The other thing that is very different in North Carolina is that you don't apply directly to school districts for public school jobs. You have to apply to the state website, and then you choose which school districts (and specific job openings) where you want your application sent. You do that at: https://nc.teachermatch.org/signin.do

    I don't know if this has changed, but it used to be that you couldn't apply on the NC state website unless you already have your NC teacher's license. You have to input your teacher license ID number, and it will not allow you to complete the application without it. They don't do the "license pending" or "license applied for" thing, so make sure you get your NC license right away. I know that in Florida, you can apply for teaching jobs with your license pending or license applied for, but you can't do that in North Carolina (or at leaset you couldn't last time I applied.)
     
    ready2learn likes this.
  11. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,376
    Likes Received:
    808

    May 20, 2020

    Oh, I forgot to say -- they don't offer tenure in NC anymore. So no job protection for you...
     
  12. ready2learn

    ready2learn Comrade

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2013
    Messages:
    356
    Likes Received:
    78

    May 20, 2020

    I am not a NC teacher, but teach in South Carolina right across the border. I think the answer I am going to give is similar in both states, but I can't say I am sure. In SC, we have teacher associations, that you can join for the liability insurance. The union is very weak. It doesn't have ability of collective bargaining. Membership isn't required and I would guess that at most, 10% of my coworkers are a member of one of the associations. I am a member because of the liability insurance, and also because I believe it is important to be a member of a professional organization.

    My understanding is that conditions are not as poor in NC as they were 5 years ago, but I could certainly be wrong about that. Saying that, there are several very highly rated schools in NC near where I live, but I wouldn't want to move to North Carolina.
     
    MrD likes this.
  13. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Messages:
    5,229
    Likes Received:
    1,592

    May 21, 2020

    The only people I know who live in NC are people who retired and moved down there. Are there just too many retired people that are not invested in education and they don't bother to make the schools and teachers a priority? Maybe Florida too?
     
    MrD and RainStorm like this.
  14. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2011
    Messages:
    6,124
    Likes Received:
    976

    May 22, 2020

    I have only heard bad things. I graduated into a horrific job market in 2010. At the time it was a popular idea to go teach in NC because it was one of the few places where it was somewhat plausible for a new grad to get a job (at the time, schools in my home state were getting 5,000+ applicants for a single position). I had a couple of college friends who ended up going there. One of them had a 3rd grade class with 42 students in it. I honestly can't imagine how that's even legal. I'm sure it's against fire code in my building. Another was a sped teacher with almost 70 students on her caseload. Needless to say, they didn't last long there. One was able to get a job in VA her 3rd year and the other was able to go back to our home state by taking a job with students with severe/profound disabilities. I also seem to remember some drama a few years back with the state saying they weren't going to give higher pay for MA degrees. I'm not sure if that's been resolved or not.
     
  15. MrD

    MrD Guest

    May 22, 2020

    That is insane. It is mentally impossible for one adult to monitor and effectively teach 42 students at once. I had 42 my first year but it was a split class and that was difficult as it is. No pay for MA degrees is also crazy. Other professionals get paid more, teachers need to fall under that same umbrella was well.
     
  16. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,376
    Likes Received:
    808

    May 22, 2020

    When I moved from VA to NC, I had to take an $8,000 pay cut. That was tough. NC has a statewide pay scale, so there is no way around that.

    Ten years later, when I moved from NC to FL, I had to take a $3,000 pay cut from NC (they don't pay for full years of experience in FL anymore, and they only offer a pittance for a Master's here.) That was tough.

    If I had been able to stay in VA for my entire career (18 years) I'd now be making $20,000 more per year!

    The cost of living is actually so much higher here in FL. And elementary teachers in FL are now required to gain both their Reading Specialist certification and their ESOL certification within their first 5 years, or they can't recertify. Both of those certifications require 5 classes (in my case, 5 graduate classes.) Even if the district pays for it, that still means I would have to take TEN graduate courses in a five year period, while teaching full time. That is a huge burden on a teacher. (And not all districts will pay for it.)

    I have the exact same education level (I came to teaching with a Master's) so gaining education over the years wasn't the reason for different pays. The cost of living between VA and NC was only slightly different, so that doesn't really account for it. The cost of living in FL is so much higher than NC (the same "amount" of house here cost me almost twice as much!)

    Now imagine I had worked any of my 18 years in a union-state (VA and NC are not union.)

    I wish I could have been able to move to a better-paying state, but we don't always have the luxury to pick-up and move.
     
    MrD likes this.
  17. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    11,598
    Likes Received:
    2,887

    May 22, 2020

    :yeahthat:

    When my son started teaching, it was one of the states I refused to let him apply to.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2020
    MrD likes this.
  18. Pisces

    Pisces Companion

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2019
    Messages:
    178
    Likes Received:
    78

    Jun 4, 2020

    Would you consider teaching in Arizona? They are dying for teachers there. You wouldn't have to take the NES because you already have your FL cert. I used to live there and getting certified was very easy via reciprocity. Pay is not that great (probably the same as FL) but cost of living is low... much lower than FL.

    As far as NC, I knew a few teachers who worked at Cary Academy (independent school). They liked it there. FL also has a lot of independent schools if you're looking for a smaller class size environment with lots of parental support.
     
  19. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    11,598
    Likes Received:
    2,887

    Jun 4, 2020

    Arizona was the other state I refused to let him apply to, but hey, just my opinion. Not enough support for staff nor enough money.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2020
  20. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,376
    Likes Received:
    808

    Jun 4, 2020

    It typically works this way -- if a state is easy to get certified, it is generally because the pay is low, the cost of living is high, and working conditions aren't great. If the state is hard to get certified in, it also sometimes follows that the pay is much better, especially when compared to the cost of living, and the working conditions are better. Maybe not always, but 97% of the time...
     
  21. Pisces

    Pisces Companion

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2019
    Messages:
    178
    Likes Received:
    78

    Jun 5, 2020

    I understand where you're coming from but if everyone thought like this, some states would have no teachers left. The kids in those states deserve a good education too. Some states are good for starting out and honing your craft.
     
  22. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,376
    Likes Received:
    808

    Jun 5, 2020

    Actually, if that happened, the state would be in a crisis and would be forced to take action to improve things. That doesn't happen because teachers accept the less than adequate pay and working conditions, take on second jobs, etc. They teach in classes that do not use sound teaching practices, and that shortcut legally required things, like accommodations and services for ELLs.

    Yes, they do deserve a good education, with adequately paid and trained teachers -- not just teachers who are starting out and honing their craft.

    Where I'm at in Florida right now, we are supposed to have 18 students as a max in K-2 classes. Every single teacher at my local school has at least 26 students, with no aid of any kind. Forty percent of the school do not speak English as their native language. However, the entire time I was there, I never met the ELL/ESL teacher. I did get an email from her (she worked at a different school and serviced multiple schools) sending me a list of students who needed to be put on a computer program for ELLs three times a week for 30 minutes. That was the extent of that.

    We technically had an ESE (Sped Teacher) but she was on extended medical leave the entire time I was there. They hire a temporary replacement for her, and that lady stayed for 3 days, and then went on medical leave. I never actually met any ESE teacher while I was there. All of those services were being provided by a person with only a high school education. To me, that is not a good education.

    My classroom, which had 28 students (with no aid) had only one child actually on grade level. The majority were at least 2 years behind. I tried for over 5 weeks to get access to one child's IEP. During that time, no one in administration could locate it (so how exactly was I supposed to follow it?) Since the ESE and replacement ESE were both out on medical leave, I just had to "figure it out on the fly." Not a great way to provide legally required accommodations. I also had SEVEN tier 3 behavior students in my overcrowded class. So explain to me how having a teacher who is "starting out" would benefit these students exactly?

    I should also add that in the local district, substitutes were impossible to find (due to such low pay) and that 90% of our absences had no sub coverage, which meant any time any teacher was out, their class had to be split among the remaining classes -- pushing class sizes to 34-36 students (still no aid.) To try and "combat" this, the district decided to lower the standards for subs (rather than pay more.) Now, you only have to have a high school diploma to be put in charge of a class - sometimes for weeks on end, because when a contracted teacher resign, it often takes 4-5 months to find and process a replacement.

    Low pay is the least of a teacher's worries in some states -- but it usually is indicative of how teachers are regarded and respected in that state.
     
    stephenpe and Caesar753 like this.
  23. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2014
    Messages:
    11,598
    Likes Received:
    2,887

    Jun 6, 2020

    I live in NJ. He was willing to go elsewhere for that first job, if needed, to get experience, because the competition to get available jobs in NJ can be quite high. However, going to NC and AZ were not options because once you get the job in a state that won't pay you enough to repay your student loans or buy a house, you still make friends and tend to stay. You get deeper in debt and the outlook for a better income tomorrow never materializes. If you were from NC or AZ, and you already knew what to expect, then you became a teacher knowing the score. My son ended up in VA - they have the same needy kids, too, but pay their teachers better - a truly living wage that allows to pay off student loans, pay off a credit card, and qualify for a car loan. They are a non-tenure state, like NC and AZ, but they pay enough to allow you to eventually leave the state, if desired. I think my son will stay in VA, just like he would have stayed in NC or AZ, had he been hired. It's not easy to pick up and move once you've made friends, put down roots, but you haven't been able to amass any savings to fund a move. Pisces, if you want to go to either of those two states to "hone your craft", go ahead. My son already had an additional MEd. in ESL - that's a lot of education, and it was time to find a job that paid a living wage based on his education. Trust me when I say that he works with plenty of students, deserving of a good education, on a daily basis. The difference is that the teacher isn't living in poverty, too.
     
  24. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2003
    Messages:
    1,940
    Likes Received:
    173

    Jun 11, 2020

    Rainstorm, I feell for you. I taught in Fla for 40 years. The party in power the last 20 yrs has done an excellent job of trying to destroy public ed. in Fla. As you probably know they believe the private sector is better for children despite their mandate from the Fla constitution. My wife is a para in a low performing school and they had to fire 2 kindergarten teachers. SHE was the K teacher for much of the year after Christmas by herself. (with no aide time) Fortunately, she was much better than the guy they fired and had much experience in the classroom.
     
  25. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Messages:
    4,376
    Likes Received:
    808

    Jun 11, 2020

    I totally believe it. And the charter schools here have mandatory 9 hour work days! (often with no duty-free lunch break.) And they have tons of additional "after school" duties required. Low pay, long hours, and they make teaching unpleasant -- yeah, that's the way to attract quality teachers in an area with an enormous teacher shortage.
     
    stephenpe likes this.
  26. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,748
    Likes Received:
    1,710

    Jun 11, 2020

    I, also, taught in Florida for the majority of my 40+ years. The plus for me was moving to SPED and finding schools where I was allowed to do my own thing and pretty much ignored by the rest of the school. I was able to teach my students the way they needed to be taught and make sure they had their necessary services.

    The other plus is that I had a husband with a good income. Even with that, some years I worked a second job. I would only teach in AZ or NC if I had a partner with a second income.
     
  27. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,748
    Likes Received:
    1,710

    Jun 11, 2020

    Posted 4 times! What's going on with the site tonight!!
     
  28. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

    Joined:
    May 2, 2006
    Messages:
    1,101
    Likes Received:
    140

    Jun 13, 2020

    It's probably being run by people in NC!
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

Total: 205 (members: 1, guests: 179, robots: 25)
test