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March 2019

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March 1, 2019

By Brad McElhinny, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The budgets in the state Senate and House of Delegates are on a collision course, with the biggest difference – predictably – a pay raise for teachers.

The House Finance Committee voted to approve its budget on Thursday afternoon, the 51st day of the legislative session. It includes the pay raise for teachers and school service personnel. The full House then took up the bill on first reading during a Thursday...

March 4, 2019

By Ryan Quinn, Charleston Gazette-Mail

As of Friday evening, a week since the West Virginia House of Delegates passed a “clean” public school worker pay raise bill, Senate Education Committee Chairwoman Patricia Rucker hadn’t put it on her committee’s agenda.

Her committee, and others, which will continue to meet Saturday, have been advancing other education bills ahead of the end of this year’s regular legislative session next Saturday. One bill seeks to specifically allow...

March 5, 2019

By Brad McElhinny, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Gov. Jim Justice said he will play a more direct role in legislative budget discussions, particularly relating to a teacher pay raise that he has backed for months.

“What I want to do is to try to bring everybody together, if it be a special session or whatever it be and try to make some real progress,” Justice said during a midday press conference.

The governor said he will talk to each caucus,...

March 6, 2019

By Brad McElhinny, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Maneuvering over a pay raise for teachers and school staff continued in the state Senate.

The Senate voted 18-14, with two absences, to amend its version of the state budget into the House of Delegates’ version on Tuesday evening. The House version includes a teacher pay raise. The Senate version does not...

March 7, 2019

By Brad McElhinny, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — West Virginia legislators are lined up to pass a budget in the next day or so, holding off on a teacher pay raise and other changes to the public school system until work is done in a special session.

Talk of a special session has swirled for days at the Capitol, and Gov. Jim Justice announced it in ...

March 8, 2019

By Brad McElhinny 

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The proposed House of Delegates budget establishes a $67 million line item for educators’ pay raises but doesn’t yet allocate the money.

The allocation would come after a special session ...

March 11, 2019

By Ryan Quinn, Charleston Gazette-Mail

Saturday marked the end of this year’s regular legislative session, much of which focused on education.

That was mostly because of the education overhaul bill (Senate Bill 451), in which Republican leaders bundled their promised public school worker pay raises with many other things, including legalizing charter schools and funding about 400 more student support personnel, like social workers and psychologists.

The House of...

March 13, 2019

By Alex Thomas, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — As frustrations continue over the delay involving new schools in Kanawha County, U.S. Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., spoke Tuesday to a regional Federal Emergency Management Agency leader about construction plans and related obstacles.

Capito discussed with FEMA Region III Administrator MaryAnn Tierney the current situation surrounding Clendenin Elementary and Herbert Hoover High schools and why — more than...

March 14, 2019

By Jake Flatley, WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Dale Lee, the president of the West Virginia Education Association, is calling the upcoming public forums around the state to discuss education issues a “golden opportunity.”

Dr. Steve Paine announced Monday that the state Department of Education will host seven public forums in...

March 15, 2019

WV MetroNews

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Eight counties are no longer on the state Department of Education’s Financial Watch List because of improvements in each system’s financial situation.

The department announced Wednesday that boards of education in Boone, Clay, Hampshire, Hardy, Lewis, Pocahontas, Summers and Tucker counties have improved their general expense fund balances. State officials also considered the number of personnel paid through local funds...

March 19, 2019

By Alex Thomas, WV MetroNews

CABELL COUNTY, W.Va. — The West Virginia Department of Education has been here before.

Education stakeholders, public officials and community members divided into groups for roundtable discussions on best addressing an area’s education concerns.

The last time the department did such was during talks on the future of...

March 20, 2019

By Caity Coyne, Charleston Gazette-Mail

WELCH — Disrespected, ignored, unappreciated and demoralized were just a few of the words used by Southern West Virginia teachers to describe their relationship with the Legislature at the West Virginia Department of Education’s second listening forum for education reform on Tuesday.

“We honestly, we dread each legislative session, year after year after year,” said William French, a teacher at Glenwood School, in Mercer County. “Each year...

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