No end yet to teachers' strike throughout West Virginia

07 March, 2018, 00:12 | Author: Mable Gonzales
  • WV Schools Closed For 8th Day

But Wood said it was not immediately clear if all schools could open that fast, citing logistical issues such as stocking kitchens with food for school lunches. A state Department of Education spokeswoman didn't return an email message.

"But the Senate then, mistakenly, passed the House version of the bill with the 5 percent raise, rather than the 4 percent version". If revenues continue to improve, I will move quickly working with the Legislature to bring the remaining state workers from 3 percent to the 5 percent raise level.

A Senate finance committee vote earlier in the day drew boos from an overflow crowd of teachers and supporters who watched a livestream from the Senate committee room.

Teachers across the state are talking about striking after lawmakers failed to pass a raise for the second year in a row. However, the Senate also approved an amendment to the title of the bill that will require approval by the House of Delegates.

"I want to go back to school, but not until my teachers get what I think they deserve", he said, adding that he thinks the value of the strike in the long run will outweigh any absences now. The state has the lowest average teacher salary in the nation, according to 2016 Bureau of Labor Statistics data. Shawn Hime, executive director of the Oklahoma State School Boards Association, said not giving teachers a raise "rolled out the welcome mat for Texas, Kansas and Arkansas to lure away even more of Oklahoma's talented teachers".

Miller posted on social media that Senate President Mitch Carmichael, R-Jackson - conducting action on the Senate floor - was over two hours late for the meeting with the superintendents.

A brief period of confusion occurred Saturday night after the Senate believed it had voted for the 4% raise.

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The conference committee indicated both the House and Senate would suspend their rules today and allow for their consideration of the conference committee report signed this morning providing for the 5-percent raises. The bill affects state employees whose salaries are directly set by code; raises for other state employees will be addressed in the Fiscal Year 2019 budget bill, which will be considered in the coming days.

The strike began after Jim Justice, the state's billionaire governor, signed legislation which promised a 2 percent pay increase for all state employees, beginning in July, and followed by a 1 percent pay increase for teachers starting in 2020. Senate leaders confirmed the deal, saying it involves some reduced government.

"The fact is we have oil and gas in this state so that's where they're going to drill, and raising the gross production tax is one of the methods we have in increasing funding", she said. Not only this, but my staff and I made additional cuts which will give all State employees 5% as well.

"While everyone is focused on the mistakes, my focus is exclusively on getting our children back to school", he said.

Public school teachers in all 55 counties of West Virginia have been on strike since February 22nd, with Friday March 2nd marking the seventh day of school closures across the state. However, members of the committee have yet to come to terms - and union leaders of teachers and school service personnel are standing firm in their demand for a 5 percent raise. When the error was discovered, the Senate corrected the mistake and re-voted for the lower pay raise. He noted it was only preliminary. Details were not disclosed publicly.

It's not known when the committee will meet, so it's possible the strike could stretch out for days.

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