28 Apr

What Matters for Thursday, April 28, 2016

Knowing how to read or not. That is the question. Mark kicks off the show with Writer and Editor at the John William Pope center for Higher Education Policy, Jesse Saffron. They discuss his article, “Will the UNC System Rise Above Higher Education’s Status Quo.” Jesse tells Mark one of new UNC System President Margaret Spellings goals is to improve the general education curricula by insuring all incoming students have basic math and reading skills before they enter high school, much less try to apply for college (whether community or university). Mark is amazed anyone could make it past 1st or 2nd grade without knowing how to read. Jesse says Spellings has also suggested better student assessments of professors so leaders in education can improve course content and make adjustments where needed. Mark says this really could help create a graduate who is more fully prepared to enter the workforce.

Then, WBTV Investigative Reporter Nick Ochsner joins Mark. Mark asks if the Queen City is getting behind the Charlotte Hornets as they move forward in the NBA finals. Nick says it’s not the fervor the Panthers received, but there is excitement. They segue to HB2. Nick says interestingly, the bill seems to be affecting not only business in the Charlotte, but the Mayor who got the ordinance passed that caused the bill to ever be passed into law. Mark asks if it’s a negative effect. Nick says that has yet to be seen, but he knows she’s not well-liked in Raleigh. Mark asks why Rep. Schaeffer resigned so suddenly. Nick says he thinks the long session has a lot to do with it since she cited work as a reason for her resignation. Mark asks the latest on House Speaker Moore. Nick says he has a new story coming out tomorrow at 6 on WBTV regarding some financing questions.

In the second hour, Civitas Education Policy Analyst Dr. Bob Luebke joins Mark. They discuss the recent request by UNC and NCSU for $500 million in bonds that would be paid back over 100 years that would go toward building or repairing existing brick and mortar structures on campus. Bob explains from a taxpayer perspective, taking out a bond for this amount time doesn’t make financial sense. He says in order for the Board of Governors to approve this, the GA would have to change a law because the current maximum length of time a bond can be financed is 30 years. Mark asks why more buildings are needed when there are articles about how many are being underutilized. Bob says that’s a good question and one which lawmakers should consider if this issue indeed gets that far. They also delve into the issue of teacher pay that will keep you riveted.

Finally, Facebook will allow you to identify up to 58 genders, but it won’t let one woman post pictures of herself dressed as a man questioning whether this makes it acceptable for a man dressed as a woman go into a restroom that doesn’t match their sex. Kristi Merritt says Facebook notified her about some of her pictures being inappropriate because of nudity. She explains one was taken at the Republican Convention and another was of a mug. Mark asks if the mug was clothed. Kristi says they finally banned her from FB for seven days. She says Washington is looking at similar legislation. Her post has been shared more than 120,000 times. That’s what you call viral.

American Enterprise Institute Director of Education Policy Studies Rick Hess and Tim Warner Cable News Capital Tonight Anchor Tim Boyum join us tomorrow.

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