Kentucky Education Association plans statewide pension rally at the Capitol on Monday
KEA president Stephanie Winkler says teachers called out on Friday to show how serious they are taking the pension issue.
FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDRB) -- Teachers across Kentucky are being asked to march in Frankfort on Monday.
The Kentucky Education Association wants teachers to make a show of unity as lawmakers return to the Capitol to try to pass a budget.
KEA president Stephanie Winkler said teachers will be "watching every single move legislators make."
"If this budget is not in the best interest of public education, students and public service, then we will react," she said. "We will not be silent."
Winkler was openly critical of lawmakers who passed a pension bill and "gave all of Kentucky a lesson on how to abuse the system." She said the last-minute passage of the pension bill goes against everything they teach their students.
"What has occurred over the past 24 hours is nothing short of a bomb that has exploded on public service," Winkler said, adding that the process that led lawmakers to pass Senate Bill 151 "showed blatant disrespect for the law and for democracy."
While the organization does have issues with the bill itself, it's most upset with the controversial way the bill was passed.
Winker said public school teachers are sick and tired of "corrupt government and the way they have been treated by their lawmakers."
The KEA says lawmakers pulled a classic legislative bait and switch because pension changes were added to an existing wastewater bill. And the nearly 300-page bill was pushed through as lawmakers only had a few hours to look over it.
Dozens of teachers packed the room at the KEA headquarters in Frankfort. Behind Winkler was a white board filled with names of state legislators that voted "yes" or "no" for SB151.
"We don't get into this for money," she said. "We get into this for kids, and I don't take this position lightly," Winkler said with her voice cracking with emotion. "And if we go the wrong way, it's going to be to our commonwealth's detriment. Period."
Hundreds of teachers across the commonwealth called out from school Friday to show how serious of an issue this is for public schools.
Educators are planning a rally and march Monday in Frankfort. They will meet at KEA headquarters at 8 a.m. and begin a march to the Capitol at 9 a.m. for a 10 a.m. rally.
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- Ky. Attorney General announces intentions to file lawsuit over hastily passed pension reform bill
- Kentucky Senate passes hastily filed pension reform bill; school districts across the state cancel class hours later
- Teachers having a huge impact on debate over pension reform in Frankfort
- Time and momentum appear to be running out on Kentucky's pension bill
- Ky. Gov. Matt Bevin posts video about teachers' pension system
- Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin says teachers protesting pension bill are misinformed
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