Henderson County teachers march outside historic courthouse

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Henderson County teachers, parents and students rallied outside the historic courthouse Wednesday for better pay and more funding. (Photo credit: WLOS)

Teachers across North Carolina marched Wednesday for better funding and more money.

Here in Western North Carolina, two school districts - Buncombe County and Asheville City - closed for the day to give those teachers the chance to rally in Raleigh.

For those teaching in Henderson County, they didn't get that same opportunity, so they held their own rally and more than 100 people showed up.

Some who came wore red shirts in support of teachers. Others held signs in hopes of sending a clear message to lawmakers across the state.

"North Carolina is the ninth state in population in the country and yet our funding is embarrassing for our public schools," teacher Jayne Jennings said.

She said teachers aren't afraid anymore to speak up for their rights and their students.

"North Carolina is 39th in the nation in per pupil. We are $2,400 behind the national average in student funding," Jennings saidd.

She's not the only one upset about the lack of resources, students say they are, too.

"I know you're tired, but so am I. I'm tired of not getting supplies," one student said.

In Raleigh, the message was more of the same.

There Gov. Roy Cooper told teachers he's listening to what they have to say. He said he plans to give all teachers at least a 5 percent raise - something he hopes to pay for by freezing tax cuts for corporations.

"We have to invest in textbooks. We have to invest in digital learning. We have to improve the physical conditions of our schools," Cooper saidd.