Members of the public had a second chance to express their thoughts on the controversial bill on education reform on Monday night at a public hearing at the West Virginia House of Delegates. .
Below is the video of this public hearing courtesy of West Virginia Public Broadcasting:
Earlier in the day, more than 70 speakers weighed in on the bill that is now part of the House finance committee.
UPDATE, 3:44 PM
As the education reform bill continues in the West Virginia House of Representatives, there are significant differences between the Senate bill and the bill as it stands. is presently in the House.
The House of Delegates has published a comparison of Senate Bill 451 which presents the Senate version, the Insertion and Insertion version of the House Education Committee and the Inset version of the Finance Committee text. from the room. Below the comparison:
The bill was passed by the House Education Committee and is now in the House Finance Committee.
A public hearing was completed Monday morning at the House of Delegates of West Virginia, where members of the public gave their views on a controversial education reform bill.
The second public hearing is scheduled for 17:30.
More than 70 speakers commented on the bill. Vincent Pinti, a Bridgeport High School student with dorsal and wheelchair muscular atrophy, was one of the speakers. He received a standing ovation for his comments.
"Do you understand that we have set up a school designed to compete with other schools, we say that some children deserve to win and that others deserve to fail," said Pinti.
Pinti said chartered school funding, using public school resources "hurts people like me."
Below, the video of the public hearing:
Dale Lee, president of the West Virginia Education Association, said he had scored points during the public hearing and that 77% were against the bill.
Lee said the real experts are those who sit in the public and in the gallery and "have traveled miles and miles to be heard."
A Hardy County teacher stated that she objected to the bill. She said that schools need competitive salaries to prevent teachers from going out of the state, good insurance, to solve problems with the Insurance Agency of employees public and mental health and social counselors in each school.
Keith Pauley, a parent from Kanawha County, rose to speak in favor of the bill. He stated that he had four children and that his family had tried all the methods to educate them – public, private and home education.
Pauley said that all her children are different and that the state needs a unique way to handle the differences between the children who live there.
One teacher complained about the lack of participation of educators in Senate Bill 451.
"As a teacher, I give you a job. Go visit a classroom and see what changes are needed, "said the teacher.
Taylor Justice, a second-year Wayne County teacher, said Governor Jim Justice's promise of a new 5% wage increase was drowning in Senate Bill 451.
The teacher pointed out that 90% of children in West Virginia attend public schools and that the bill does not provide them with sufficient funding.
Justice said his students had been severely affected by the opioid crisis.
"I would like to encourage you to visit a school and question these kids about their lives," she said.
Some at the public hearing discussed the challenges facing today's educators.
"I love being a teacher, but it's getting more difficult every day," said Tracy McClanahan.
Randy Halsey said that he really should have been in the classroom Monday rather than at a public hearing.
"But my kids will follow the best social studies lesson because democracy works," Halsey said.
Sarah Anderson, a professor at the University of West Virginia, said the bill does not address some of the key issues that need to be addressed: poverty, trauma and broken homes.
Lorraine Davis, a teacher in Mingo County, said there was "no conclusive evidence that the proposed changes would have a positive effect on student achievement."
The West Virginia PTA said it believed the bill would invalidate public education. Rose Rosanna, vice president of the organization, said that the bill was not the solution to improve education.
Melissa Adkins of Nicholas County Schools said that charter schools and education savings accounts would not work in Nicholas County, citing the number of schools as the reason.
Several county school principals said that educators should have been included in the drafting of the bill.
Cathi Bradley said that mental health professionals are missing a lot in schools.
One speaker clearly expressed his opinion on what should happen to the bill.
"The construction of this bill. . . It's not enough with what we need to do. Kill this bill, "said Mickey Blackwell.
All interveners at the public hearing did not oppose the bill. David Howe said he supports Senate Bill 451.
"I beg you to adopt this bill," Howe said.
Mother Kathy Kraus was another of our supporters.
"I speak on behalf of parents and children who feel that they have neither the choice nor the voice," said Kraus.
Parent Kimberly Earl, who has four children in schools in Kanawha County, said the state does not need additional educational institutions.
"We do not need more schools," said Earl. "We need more people who care about the schools we already have."
Chairman after debate, the West Virginia Education Bill was considered Monday morning in the House of Delegates of West Virginia at a public hearing.
A long line has formed in the House while educators have signed up to talk about the omnibus education bill. This was the first of two public hearings because another hearing is scheduled at 5:30 pm. Members of the House expect the Monday morning hearing to last approximately two hours.
"Charter schools lack transparency and will affect the passage of excessive county taxes and fees," said Lori Kesser.
At the same time, David Verry, Chair of the West Virginia Board of Education, spoke in favor of the current bill passed by the House Committee on Education. Perry's comments contrast sharply with a statement he made earlier about Senate Bill 451, which was heavily amended by the House committee.
As the constitutional body responsible for overseeing all public schools and not charter schools, it is our responsibility to work with all students, let's emphasize, all students have access to a system of education. free, effective and equitable education, "said Mr. Perry. .
Mr. Perry said the educational landscape had changed and that the best way forward was one that involved all West Virginia families, West Virginia communities, teachers, educators, service staff and legislators.
"If we all work together, we can actually change the climate of success in our schools and the economic progress of our state," said Perry. "It has been said that good public policy makes good politics. While the House finances are deliberating on the house committee version of the House, be sure to keep the changes to the Training Committee version as a minimum and report back to the House for adoption.
Karen Nance, a former member of the Cabell County Board of Directors, said about the bill: "The mere fact of talking about a radical reform does not make this reform a good one."
Groups representing school employees also mobilized to comment on the bill. Fred Albert, president of the West Virginia Teachers' Federation, said no teacher, director or parent had participated in drafting the bill.
Unions representing school employees have received authorities during a vote over the weekend to authorize action at the state level if they deem it necessary.
Superintendents of Upshur County and Marion County Schools also shared their views on the education measure.
"Our stakeholders have a lot of great ideas, but we have not heard them and that's the problem," said Upshur County Superintendent Sara Stankus.
Members of the public have a chance on Monday to make their voice heard on a controversial education reform bill that has brought groups of vote over the weekend for a state-wide class action, if necessary.
The West Virginia House of Delegates holds two public hearings – from 8:00 to 17:30.
Representatives of school employees were very dissatisfied with Senate Bill 451 passed by the Senate, which consolidated salary increases for school employees with other reforms of the Senate. education, including charter public schools.
Some of these controversial measures were removed as the bill passed through the House of Delegates. In a 15-10 vote, the Education Committee of the House passed the Education Reform Bill Friday after several days of discussion and several amendments. Republicans voted to approve the bill and Democrats voted to oppose it. The bill is now going to the House finance committee.
Of the. John Doyle, D-Jefferson, decided to completely deny the bill and was rejected by the House committee on education. He said that the bill was still too complex and that it required a year of study before it could be fully understood.
Several key amendments were approved in committee. The charter school provision was amended to recommend a pilot program for two elementary schools that could be located anywhere in the state. The majority of teachers and parents should also approve the decision to pass.
The non-severability clause, which provided for the cancellation of the entire bill if any of its aspects were challenged in court, was removed. Paycheck protection, a provision that provided for the annual approval of employees for union deductions, was removed from the invoice.
Meanwhile, the option of education savings accounts has been totally removed. A provision that would prevent teachers from paying in the event of a work stoppage has also been removed.
The bill approved a provision that would fund school innovation zones with a minimum of $ 5 million.
The amendments are suggestions from the Education Committee of the House that could still be amended.