West Virginia teachers unions plan 'walk-in' to remind lawmakers about key issues

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KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) – Nearly a year after a statewide teacher walk-out in West Virginia, unions representing teachers and school staff plan a walk-in, to remind state lawmakers of the issues teachers still face.

The planned walk-in will happen on Jan. 9 - the same day that lawmakers head back for the 2019 legislative session.

It's also the same day that Gov. Jim Justice will give his annual State of the State address.

That's why the educators are calling their walk-in the "State of our Schools."

Thirty minutes prior to the start of the school day on Jan. 9, teachers, school service personnel and supporters will rally with signs and then they will walk into school together as a show of solidarity.

The Kanawha County Education Association says some of their objectives include finding a dedicated source of funding for PEIA, competitive salaries, protecting seniority, and protecting public schools from charter schools and vouchers.

Fred Albert, president of the West Virginia American Federation of Teachers, says they also need lawmakers to know they want more people in schools like counselors and nurses to help meet the needs of today's children.

"We've been noticed around the world for what we did last year, and we are not going to lose that momentum. We just made a down payment and we want to keep in the public's eye and in our legislators’ eye the fact that we are staying united, and we are committed to public education and the needs that we have."