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Congressman Price visits FCS’ Early College High School

by Curtis Hayes, Director of Communications

U.S. Representative David Price, who’s 4th Congressional District now encompasses Franklin County, visited the Early College High School January 21st as part of a legislative fact finding mission.

Price met with Franklin County Schools Superintendent Dr. Rhonda Schuhler, as well as Vance-Granville Community College President Dr. Rachel Desmarais, Franklin County Board of Commissioners Chair Sidney Dunston, Franklin County Board of Education Chair Paige Sayles, as well as many other educational and civic leaders.

Congressman Price said he believes a strong public education system is a key element in the formula for a healthy government and nation. He also said that innovative infrastructure and transportation projects that stay ahead of the curve are vital to future success. He said access to broadband is a major issue currently being addressed in Congress.

“Nothing is more important in combating this rural-urban divide that broadband access,” Price said. “Closing the achievement gap is exactly what federal government should be doing. The challenge is to get more funding where it needs to go.”

Price is the only member of North Carolina’s congressional delegation with a seat on the U.S. House Appropriations Committee, which has oversight of federal budgeting and spending. He is also the ranking member of the U.S. House Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies, which means his influence could prove crucial to the future of Franklin County.

In addition to technology and transportation issues, healthcare challenges continue to have an impact on Franklin County’s public school system, Dr. Schuhler explained.

“School safety and mental health go hand-in-hand,” she said.

Schuhler also said that increased funding for students with exceptional needs is critical.

“We are seeing more students with more significant needs,” she said.

Price agreed that federal support for special education has never lived up to the promise, but he said it is an obligation the government needs to meet. He also said the government needs to focus more on helping children earlier through programs like Head Start and other early childhood interventions, in addition to helping parents find childcare opportunities that provide early educational opportunities.

 

five adults stand and talk

Congressman price, center, listened as ECHS science teacher Kerissa Armstead, right, discussed her innovative teaching style, as well as overcoming some of the challenges created by limited space.

 

Three adults have a conversation while seated at a table covered with a green tablecloth

Dr. Rhonda Schuhler, right, Dr. Rachel Desmarais, center and U.S. Rep. David Price.  

 

A room full of people seated at several rectangular tables

Franklin County Board of Commissioners Chair Sydney Dunston, standing far center, welcomed Congressman Price prior to the beginning of the meeting and school tour.

 

Eleven adults standing and posing for a photo

Congressman Price, third from left, with educational and civic leaders.