The Children's Alliance

Support Our Children through Our County Budget PDF Print Email
Wednesday, 19 September 2018 00:00

Support Our Children through Our County Budget

Once again it is budget season in Mecklenburg County.  Both the City and County have the important task of deciding how to spend our money to meet the needs of our community.  The Children’s Alliance believes that there is no better investment in our future than supporting the needs of our community’s children and youth. The County budget has a significant number of line items in various departments that signify important investments in children of all ages.

CMS has requested an increase in County funding, and part of that funding supports the hiring of additional guidance counselors, social workers and psychologists.  We believe that is crucially important for our students and fully support the County Manager’s recommendation to fund these positions.  In light of continued school violence and student deaths, we must invest in providing better prevention services to all our students, especially those who experience mental health problems, live in families with daily challenges or otherwise are vulnerable. Investing in addressing student needs from the “inside/out” is far more cost efficient than intervening after a tragedy occurs.

Another important budget item is salary adjustments for CMS teachers.  NC ranks far down the list of states in terms of teacher compensation. While teacher pay is not the panacea to guaranteed student achievement, we believe that NC teachers deserve a competitive compensation package in order to recruit and retain the best possible teacher workforce for our students.

There are also recommended increases in funding to improve parks and recreation centers, enhanced school based public health efforts and investment in county workers. The Children’s Alliance also supports these investments as they are important efforts for our community to support its children and youth.

Finally, the County Manager has proposed increases in childcare subsidies and investments in pre-k programs for some of our most vulnerable children and their families. ALL of these recommendations will improve the lives of our children.  Research has consistently shown that investing in early education produce long term positive outcomes for children.

The Children’s Alliance is a dedicated group of 40+ agency leaders in our community who believe that there is no greater investment in our community than our children and youth.  We respectfully ask our County Commissioners to approve a budget that addresses the needs of our community by first investing in our youngest citizens.

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