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West Virginia teachers picket in Fairmont against PEIA problems

By EDDIE TRIZZINO

Times West Virginian

Elementary teachers from Marion County Schools took to the streets Tuesday to picket against PEIA insurance changes, which could potentially raise their premiums.
(Times West Virginian photo by Tammy Shriver)

FAIRMONT, W.Va.  — After the final bell rang, the teachers of Jayenne Elementary School still had work to do.

They took off after school with signs protesting potential increases to Public Education Insurance Agency (PEIA) insurance to spread the word in Marion County.

“There’s a lot of different issues on the table — I mean a lot of it is PEIA, but you have to understand this is a national attack on public education. I mean it’s moving toward the charter schools and if you look at the proposed bills in the state, you know the local agenda pushes the state agenda, the state agenda pushes the national agenda, and they are because they want to go privatized. Everything’s moving toward being privatized,” Stacey Patterson, a teacher at Jayenne Elementary, said. “Just the general attitude toward educators and staff members and the lack of respect is just ridiculous,”

Patterson explained that changes to PEIA could mean that public education and school workers will have to pay more for health insurance premiums, and, on top of that, a proposed state budget only leaves room for a 1-percent pay raise for teachers.

“We are fed up with PEIA, we are fed up with the legislature, we need to be appreciated and we feel underappreciated for all that we do and give in our classrooms every day,” Wendy Wolfe, a teacher at Jayenne Elementary, said.

Read the entire article:  http://www.timeswv.com/news/teachers-picket-in-fairmont-against-peia-problems/article_d1e1229c-0bca-11e8-9034-afdafc0db86d.html

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