Have West Virginia teachers started a movement?

Education

You will likely never forget a nine day work stoppage earlier this year as teachers and other public employees across West Virginia called for health insurance coverage and a pay scale adjustment. 

In the couple of months since, several other states have also gone on strike. 

It looks like West Virginia teachers may have started something.

In snow, rain, or sunshine, a large group of teachers and school employees could be found lining the highway outside of John Marshall High School every day of the West Virginia teacher work stoppage. 

It was like that all across the state, and it got the attention of the entire nation. 

Several other states have now followed suit as they push for more education funding.

“It made us feel really good, it made me feel good, to see that people were looking and seeing what we were doing and going, ‘Hey, if they can do it, we can do it,'” said business teacher Joe Kuskey. 

Many people credit West Virginia teachers with striking a chord among the nation’s teachers and starting a movement.

“It has been professionally inspiring and invigorating to see West Virginia start a movement that can benefit not just the students in this state, but across this nation as other educators take up the flag to fight for what they feel is fair,” said Fab Lab director Tom Romick. 

Some agree and some disagree that teacher strikes are for a greater benefit, but inside of John Marshall, the teachers say there is a sense of support and unity like never before.

“Before, we were a faculty. After having spent time in the elements and time together here and in Charleston and in between, we have become a much stronger family as well as a faculty,” said Romick. 

North Carolina, Arizona, Oklahoma, Colorado, and Kentucky are a few states where teacher strikes have taken place this year. 

A protest poster that many teachers in those states have been seen carrying read, “Don’t Make Me Go All West Virginia On You.”

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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