Former educator visits 50 Durham schools in effort to raise teacher pay

David Seed has stood outside Durham schools holding this sign (Beairshelle Edmé/CBS North Carolina)

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — A local resident is taking his effort to raise North Carolina teacher pay across Durham County sidewalks of local schools.

On Thursday he visited his fiftieth and final school on his Durham list, all while holding his signature sign that reads, “NC ~ Raise Teacher Pay 2017.”

David Seed started Jan. 3 with Bethesda Elementary and ended at Y.E. Smith Elementary, going about his journey in alphabetical order.

He believes low teacher pay is the number one problem in North Carolina.

“As we talk so much about wanting to create jobs, as we talk so much about wanting to accrue, as we talk so much about wanting to save long-term cost on health care for juvenile justice and corrections- for unemployment, I see strengthening, promoting, maintaining, and perfecting public education as the means by which to achieve those things,” said Seed, a retired educator who was a principal in Chatham County.

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Seed said he has a lot of hope for the future, but believes pay will remain an issue and will deter good teachers and veteran educators from staying in the classroom.

“It kind of makes me cry for gratitude, but also out of sympathy that I think our teachers feel under-appreciated,” the former educator said.

Seed plans to revisit the General Assembly to talk with lawmakers on Tuesday.

“To legislators, I would say that the clock is ticking for you to do your job regarding public education,” he said. “To talk your language in the North Carolina General Assembly, again raising teacher pay, promoting and perfecting public education is the long term way to attract jobs and save against particular expenditures in the state budget.”

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