Dave DeWitt

Reporter @DaveDeWitt

Dave DeWitt is currently working on the year-long North Carolina Teacher Project. He came to WUNC in 2003 and spent four years on the staff of The State of Things.

He regularly files for NPR’s news magazines as well as Marketplace and Only A Game. He is a graduate of Denison University and formerly worked in college athletics, college admissions, and with the Tar Heel Sports Network. In 2001, he wrote the non-fiction book "True Blue".

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Education
4:00 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Online Charter Case Back In Court

The case pits K12 Inc. against the North Carolina Board of Education.
Credit Malate269 / Wikimedia Commons

The North Carolina Court of Appeals will hear arguments today in a case that pits a for-profit education company against the State Board of Education. At issue is how the board considered an online charter school application.

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Politics & Government
5:31 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

NAACP, Advocacy Organizations Challenge Voter ID Bill In Lawsuit

NC NAACP leaders spoke to crowds of protesters at the capitol this spring as a part of Moral Mondays rallies.
Credit Matthew Lenard

Several advocacy organizations have filed suit against the state of North Carolina after Governor Pat McCrory signed broad-based voting reform.  Earlier today, leaders with the NAACP spoke out against the law. Reverend William Barber said it unfairly targets African-American voters.

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Education
2:14 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

High School Grad Rate Hits All-Time High

For the second year in a row, the state high school graduation rate hit an all-time high.
Credit Malate269 / Wikimedia Commons

It’s hard to find bad news in this year’s graduation report from the Department of Public Instruction. More than 83 percent of high school students who began as freshmen four years ago graduated in four years or less. That’s up two points from last year - the previous all-time high.

Since 2006, the four-year graduation rate has gone up 15 points.

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Education
4:00 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

Voters Will Soon Decide Fate Of Wake School Bond

A school bond would add $145 to the tax bill for the average Wake County homeowner.
Credit Dave DeWitt

The last time Wake County voters had a chance to decide on a nearly $1 billion school bond, they passed it. That was seven years ago. But in 1999, a school bond failed, due to concern over higher taxes.

That mixed history has school leaders on edge. They say a new bond is essential to serving the district’s 150,000 students. Another 20,000 are expected within the next five years. They hope to build 16 new schools and make major renovations to other building to deal with that growth.

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Education
3:59 pm
Thu August 1, 2013

McCrory Defends Budget, Announces New Program

Governor McCrory says the budget for education is the largest in state history.
Credit Gurnal Scott

Governor Pat McCrory has a teaching degree. His grandmother was a teacher and his sister taught for 20 years in Wake County. He says frequently that he respects the profession and that teachers are the most important part of the state’s public education system.

The Governor continued that line of praise in his speech at the North Carolina Chamber of Commerce’s Education summit.

“I have a great admiration for teachers and they have a greater challenge than any of us have in this room at this point in time,” he said.

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Education
10:31 am
Wed July 31, 2013

UNC-TV Survives Latest State Budget

The General Assembly funded UNC-TV at $9.1 million per year in the 2013 budget.
Credit UNC-TV

July was an anxious month for many state-funded (or partially state-funded) agencies, as leaders in the Legislature hashed out a final budget. That was true for one of the most high-profile: UNC-TV, with four million viewers statewide.

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Education
1:37 pm
Tue July 30, 2013

Goodnight Decries Lack Of Support For Education

Ann Goodnight
Credit NC State University

Ann Goodnight is not happy. In a letter-to-the-editor in the News and Observer, she goes after the state budget and the leaders who wrote and passed it:

We are knowingly under-investing in our pre-K-12, community college and university students; in our teachers; and in innovative new approaches to learning. This budget is an embarrassment in its lack of investment in the skills and competitiveness of its people. This is a grievous mistake.

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Politics & Government
4:17 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

McCrory Unlikely To Wield Veto

Governor McCrory has dozens of bills to sign.
Credit Governor's office

Dozens of bills passed by the State Legislature in the last few days are sitting on Governor Pat McCrory’s desk. McCrory says he will sign most, but wants to take a closer look at a few.

Those bills include one that requires welfare recipients to be drug tested, and another that deals with billboards along highways.

The Governor said he is most proud of the tax reform law he signed earlier this week.

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Politics & Government
4:12 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

McCrory's "Rick Perry" Moment?

Gov. Pat McCrory
Credit NC Governor's office

Here’s a little frivolity to end the long week in Raleigh…

At his press conference on Friday to speak to reporters about the many bills that have arrived on his desk, Governor Pat McCrory had a bit of a Rick Perry moment.

One of his favorite talking points – first stated in his State of The State speech – is that he has three major priorities as Governor: Economy, Education, and Efficiency.

“The Three E’s,” he calls it.

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Politics & Government
4:39 am
Fri July 26, 2013

General Assembly Casts Historic Votes

Many will remember this Legislative session for the Moral Monday protests it inspired.
Credit Matthew Lenard

The General Assembly's last days were punctuated by passionate debate.

It seems like a long time ago, but it’s really been just seven months since newly-inaugurated Governor Pat McCrory sounded this hopeful tone:

“North Carolina’s greatest strength and asset remains its people,” he said during his inauguration speech.

“On those main streets across this state, it’s the people that count and that make a difference. People will come from different backgrounds but share a common set of principles. Self-starters and hard workers.”

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