Thousands of teachers arrive at the state Capitol to rally for education

04/02/2018 05:52 PM

FRANKFORT – Thousands of teachers rallied at the Capitol in Frankfort on Monday to protest the passing of the pension reform bill as well as this years budget, which they say is an attack on education.

Kristy Standifer, a teacher at Bondurant Middle School in Frankfort, says that the teachers stand united in their message to legislators.

“We want you to hear our voice, we expect you to listen to your constituents and know what they want,” Standifer said. ‘What they are doing is wrong, sneaking bills through, not letting the minority party read them before they have to vote on them, not really letting the public no what they’re doing, and then feel like like they’re trying to destroy public education. I’m here to let them know I’m not okay with that.”

Julie Phillips, a teacher at Rockcastle County Middle School, says that the teachers are concerned that the lack of funding will affect students ability to receive a good education.

“Our school system is being underfunded and we’re taking away from our kid, we’re here for our kids,” Phillips said. “People misunderstand and think that we are here for a pay increase, we’re not here for a pay increase, we’re here for our students.”

Phillips admits that another big reason for the rally to to bring attention to the way that SB 151, the pension reform bill was passed.

Phillips hopes that the way the bill was tacked on to a water treatment bill brings voter attention to the “process”.

“In a way, I can kind of say that I’m happy about that because it’s brought a lot of attention to these back door, closed door sessions that are taking place,” Phillips said. “We’ve had people look at us straight in the face but they voted against us, so that said a lot.”

Rockcastle County Director of Instruction Jason Coguer was eager to cite examples of cuts that his district has had to endure.

“We’ve had cuts to public education overt the last 5 or 6 years, extreme cuts, we’ve had to keep dipping into that rainy day fund to provide the same services,” Coguer said.


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