Education

Students Push As Lawmakers Ponder Gun Safety Bills

Mar 20, 2018
Nicole Erwin / Ohio Valley ReSource

In a recently released court video, Capt. Matt Hilbrecht of the Marshall County, Kentucky, Sheriff’s office testifies about his interrogation of Gabriel Parker, the 15-year-old accused of a mass shooting at Marshall County High School in January.

“We asked him initially when he had the thought of the school shooting,” Hilbrecht begins as he describes the events leading up to the shooting. The recording was released because Parker is being tried as an adult.

TYLER EVERT / ASSOCIATED PRESS

The nine-day teachers’ strike in West Virginia made headlines across the country, and some are wondering what the events mean for state’s political landscape. How did a widespread labor strike, a practice normally associated with Democrats, happen in a state that voted so heavily for Donald Trump?

We wanted to take a step back to explore how politics have been changing here over the past generation. West Virginia has been dubbed the heart of Trump Country, but politics here are anything but straightforward.

Kara Lofton/ West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Now that thousands of striking teachers across West Virginia have returned to work with a pay raise and a promise to fix their health care plan, how might their actions inspire others? It’s one of the questions we’ll explore on this week’s episode of Inside Appalachia.


Courtesy WVHEPC

More than 150 employers, including Facebook, are looking for workers in West Virginia. College students, graduates and area residents who are interested in work opportunities in West Virginia are encouraged to attend a job fair in Raleigh County.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Saturday March 17th is “Mountain State Maple Day” in West Virginia. Sugar shacks and maple operations around the state will open their doors to the public. Maple syrup has a long tradition in the high mountain regions of our state, and the industry is growing. As part of our ongoing series called “Appetite Appalachia”, this morning, we’ll hear two stories about maple syrup farmers in the Mountain State. It’s part of a new collaboration between West Virginia Public Broadcasting and the West Virginia Department of Agriculture. In this episode of West Virginia Morning, we meet Brandon Daniels, a producer who has been making maple syrup for nearly 30 years.   


CREDIT COURTESY OF WV STATE ARCHIVES (WVSA), COAL LIFE COLLECTION

After a nine-day statewide strike, West Virginia teachers and school service employees are back to work with a hard-won commitment from lawmakers of a 5 percent pay raise for all public workers. Gov. Jim Justice also ordered the creation of a task force to explore long-term solutions to the public employees insurance program known as PEIA.

Courtesy

Wyoming County was one of the first school systems to decide to walk off the job during the recent statewide teacher strike, essentially starting what some are calling a labor movement. West Virginia Education Assocation President Dale Lee says Wyoming along with Logan, Mingo and McDowell made the first move.

For about two weeks, teachers from across the state held signs and led chants inside the Capitol. Inside Appalachia host Jessica Lilly caught up with one of those teachers, Nina Tunstalle, on her way up to Charleston.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

After nine long days of a teacher and service personnel work stoppage, it looks as if it’s come to an end. Lawmakers agreed Tuesday to a five percent pay raise for teachers as well as a five percent pay increase for all public workers. Following the signing, union leaders say they are readying teachers and other school workers to get back on the job. 


Kara Lofton/ West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission (HEPC) announced Tuesday it is extending the application deadline for Fall 2018 PROMISE scholarships to Friday, March 30, 2018.

Some students reported they had difficulty completing their PROMISE applications by the earlier deadline due to the statewide public school work stoppage, and legislators and the governor asked the Commission to provide relief, said HEPC Chancellor Dr. Paul L. Hill.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Still no deal at West Virginia's state Capitol over public schoolteachers' pay and benefits, and what that means is no end in sight to a teachers strike that began on February 22.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Copyright 2019 West Virginia Public Broadcasting. To see more, visit West Virginia Public Broadcasting.

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West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, Gov. Jim Justice revised his revenue estimates for next year, which allows for a 5 percent pay raise for teachers and state service personnel. But schools remain closed Thursday, with thousands of state employees still concerned about ballooning insurance rates. On last night’s episode of The Legislature Today, host Andrea Lannom spoke with Senate Finance Chairman Craig Blair about these issues. We have an excerpt from that interview.

Mixed Response To Plan To End West Virginia Teacher Strike

Feb 28, 2018
Teachers John and Kerry Guerini of Fayetteville, West Virginia, hold signs at a rally at the state Capitol in Charleston, W.Va., Monday, Feb. 26, 2018.
John Raby / Associated Press

This story is developing and will be updated.

Gov. Jim Justice’s proposed 5 percent pay raise to end the walkout by West Virginia teachers quickly received a mixed reception in the Legislature where approval is needed.

Justice’s Tuesday evening announcement followed his meeting with union leaders for teachers in all 55 counties. They planned to return to work Thursday after striking a week earlier over low pay and rising health insurance costs.

Gideon and the Governor

Feb 28, 2018
Ann Coleman, principal at Triadelphia Middle School, and Ohio County Schools Superintendent Dr. Kim Miller, met with Gideon and his parents following Gov. Justice’s press conference.
Gabe Wells, Ohio County Schools

This article was originally published by Weelunk.

“If you put money in schools, you’re making smart people. And if you have smart people then you can make more smart investments.”

That’s what Gideon Titus-Glover said to Gov. Jim Justice during a town hall meeting at Wheeling Park High School on Monday. It left the state’s CEO speechless.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, after meetings Tuesday with Gov. Jim Justice, leaders of teacher and service personnel unions say the work stoppage will end Thursday. Dave Mistich reports on how the news was delivered and reaction from lawmakers.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

In this episode of West Virginia Morning, we’ll hear from union leaders and also from students who are finding ways to speak up about the teachers’ strike. 


West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, we have the latest from the Capitol on the ongoing teacher walk-out and protest at in Charleston. With the continued approach of county school officials remaining in question, the potential of legal action to be decided by the state board of education and legislative deadlines looming, educators and school workers yet again plan to head to the Capitol in Charleston to rally lawmakers for better pay and health care benefits.

On The Legislature Today, teachers, school service personnel and other public employees returned for the second of a two-day work stoppage as frustrations linger over salaries and healthcare. Leaders of the American Federation of Teachers, West Virginia and the West Virginia Education Association announced Friday that the work stoppage will continue Monday. But will it be just that -- a work stoppage -- or a full-on strike? Here’s the latest from the statehouse in this week’s reporter roundtable.

Gloria Triplett, a reading specialist at East Chapmanville Elementary School, holds signs Friday, Feb. 2, 2018, during a teacher rally at the West Virginia Capitol in Charleston, W.Va.
John Raby / Associated Press

West Virginia teachers will continue their strike into next week, the latest response to what’s quickly becoming a deepening rift with the governor and Legislature over pay and health benefits.

Thousands of teachers and school service workers in all 55 counties will remain off the job Monday, union leaders announced at a news conference Friday afternoon.

Acts of violence and protests resisting racial integration were features in many American communities in the 1950s and 60s. A tiny town in the coalfields of South Central West Virginia appears to have been a notable exception.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, all 55 West Virginia county school systems were closed yesterday and continue to be closed today, because of a two-day work stoppage over teacher salaries and Public Employee Insurance Agency costs. Reporter Dave Mistich breaks all the issues down for us.

West Virginia's public schools were closed Thursday, as teachers across the state walked out and protested for better pay and benefits from state lawmakers.

Gov. Jim Justice signed a bill Wednesday to give teachers a 2 percent pay raise starting in July, and an additional 1 percent pay increase in 2020 and 2021.

Kristian Thacker

The West Virginia House of Delegates has approved a plan to use part of yearly budget surpluses to help fund public employee health insurance.

The bill comes as thousands of teachers, school service personnel and other public employees took to the Capitol Thursday, Feb. 22, to rally lawmakers for better pay and an overhaul of their insurance plan. Schools in all 55 of West Virginia’s counties were closed Thursday because of the work stoppage. A second day of walkouts is planned for Friday.

Nicole Erwin

In the wake of school shootings in Kentucky and Florida, a rash of copycat school threats throughout the Ohio Valley left law enforcement and school officials grappling with how to improve security. A school counseling expert says it’s useful to look at the potential school shootings that did not happen. His research focuses on how schools have successfully averted shooting incidents.

Culture of Dignity

On The Legislature Today, the looming statewide teacher work stoppage is scheduled for later this week, and there are several related issues before the Finance and Education Committees. Host Andrea Lannom chats with Del. Paul Espinosa, R-Jefferson, Chairman of the House Education Committee and member of the House Finance committee. Also joining the conversation is Del. Larry Rowe, D-Kanawha, member of both the House Education and Finance Committees.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On today's West Virginia Morning, a statewide walkout has been announced for teachers and other state employees for Thursday and Friday this week. As Liz McCormick reports, the announcement was made during Saturday's rally at the state Capitol, in Charleston.

Concord University's Marsh Hall Bell Tower.
Christopher Ziemnowicz / CZmarlin / wikimedia Commons

A recent report ranks one university in West Virginia among the top 50 public colleges where undergrads receive the most scholarship aid.

According to a study released by The Student Loan Report, a limited liability private company, Concord is ranked 49th out of 250 public college of universities.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, The West Virginia House of Delegates passed a salary increase for teachers, school service personnel and state troopers Tuesday. The passage of the bill comes as two of the state’s teacher unions have threatened to strike amid growing frustrations over salaries, problems with the state’s insurance provider and teacher vacancies. Dave Mistich has the story.

On The Legislature Today, hundreds of teachers rallied at the Capitol. Teachers from selected counties staged walk-in's and walk-outs, and Governor Jim Justice cancelled a scheduled press conference where it was planned he would talk about education issues. Host Andrea Lannom chats with fellow statehouse reporters Brad McElhinny of West Virginia MetroNews and Ryan Quinn of the Charleston Gazette-Mail in another reporter roundtable.

Gloria Triplett, a reading specialist at East Chapmanville Elementary School, holds signs Friday, Feb. 2, 2018, during a teacher rally at the West Virginia Capitol in Charleston, W.Va.
John Raby / Associated Press

Before a gallery packed with teachers, West Virginia's Senate approved a bill Friday to give them annual pay raises of 1 percent over a four-year period, a move that both teachers and many senators said wasn't enough.

The bill passed on a 33-0 vote after a lengthy discussion. One senator was absent.

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