PRESTONSBURG — Teachers in Kentucky once again came together to voice their opposition to changes to pensions and possible cuts to public education funding. During a town hall meeting at the Mountain Arts Center in Prestonsburg, KEA leaders and state lawmakers spoke out against how Governor Matt Bevin has handled the situation.
“I have figured out what’s wrong with our governor,” Rep. Angie Hatton told the crowd. “He didn’t go to public school.” They’re upset Governor Bevin vetoed the legislature’s proposed 2-year state budget and a tax bill that would generate hundreds of millions of dollars to help fund it.
“We need to find other means of funding the pension, funding the budget for the schools, and not even be thinking about taking away money for textbooks,” Prestonsburg Elementary teacher Kaye Allen said. Some teachers hinted another work stoppage may be coming.
“We really want action,” Prestonsburg High School teacher Greta Gilbert said. “We’re trying to decide what the best course of action is, but we are ready to stand up together.” “I would hate to see that happen, but we have to fight for what’s right and fight for our kids,” Adams Middle School resource center director Michelle Keathley said.
Some teachers are planning to call in sick Thursday night and protest in Frankfort Friday when state lawmakers return. Teachers also rallied Tuesday evening in Carter County. Educators stood along Route 60 in Olive Hill holding signs raising awareness for their cause. Several businesses in Olive Hill have begun putting up red ribbons to show their support for public education.