Lieutenant Governor Walter Dalton campaigned in Charlotte Friday to pitch his education plan for the state. If elected governor, he says he'd push to restore education funding lawmakers cut in recent years. That includes pre-kindergarten programs that prepare needy children for school. It also includes raising teacher salaries over four years to the national average of $56,000.
"We need to get back in that mode and treat our teachers as the professionals that they are. Pay them a professional wage," said Dalton. "We also have to invest in professional development, both for our teachers, for the ones that aspire to be principals, the leader of the school."
Dalton also wants to expand what are called early college high schools. They're five-year schools that allow students to combine high school studies with career training and earn up to two years of college credit.
The plan would cost about $600 million. Dalton says he wouldn't raise taxes to pay for that, but come up with some of that money by removing a tax break for large businesses. He also wants to push mail-order companies like Amazon to pay state sales taxes and use that for education.