Republican lawmakers introduced a bill on Monday that would give citizens more control over the state's education agenda. HB1173 calls for ammending North Carolina’s constitution to allow 13 members of the State Board of Education to be elected rather than appointed by the Governor.
Currently, the board is made up of eleven members appointed by the Governor for eight-year, overlapping terms, along with the Lt. Governor and State Treasurer.
If passed, the bill would make the Superintendent of the Department of Public Instruction the chair and chief administrative officer of the board. Members would be elected from the thirteen US congressional districts and would join the Lt. Governor and the State Treausrer on the board.
The state board has the power to adopt and purchase textbooks, to develop academic content standards, to regulate teacher salaries, and to determine graduation requirements.
The legislation still needs to be approved by both the North Carolina house and senate, as well as by Democratic Governor Roy Cooper. If passed, citizens will vote on the measure this November and the changes will be enacted in 2024.