Some of our earliest WV Strong Blog Posts dealt with the topic of the 2018 Teachers strike. Here we are just a year later, with teachers back on strike due to the Senate's version of SB 451.
While last years strike centered around issues of teacher pay and PEIA, this year's strike is truly in defense of our public schools and their students. The Senate's version of SB 451 takes money away from the public school system in West Virginia and gives it to private schools in the form of Education Savings Accounts and Charter Schools.
This is a question of loyalty, not just to our teachers, but to our students, schools and communities.
From WV MetroNews
“I did not think last year we would be back this year, but we are,” said Ashley Weber, a Kanawha County second grade teacher.
“I thought after last year we would be taken care of a little bit more. We were promised to be taken care of, and we’re still here. I feel like a lot of this was retaliation. I feel like they just are not putting our kids first.”
Up for a vote in the House is a bill that includes a long-promised pay raise for educators, bundled with charter schools, education savings accounts, changes to the tax base affecting county school systems and more.
Weber objected to the process that the omnibus bill has gone through the Legislature. She also has concerns not only about charter schools but also education savings accounts and tenure.
Delegates are voting on whether to accept or reject the bill that was passed by the Senate on Monday evening.
“We hope that they don’t put it through,” Weber said. “We would rather lose the pay raise than to have this go through because it’s really not what’s best for our kids.”
Read more about this year's strike and SB 451 from WV MetroNews here.