West Virginia’s future depends on an education system that enables children to excel and reach their unique potential. The Charleston Regional Chamber of Commerce supports education policy that removes barriers to academic achievement, teacher excellence and efficiency in our schools.
Inadequate schools not only shortchange children’s futures, but they weaken our economy, which depends on an educated and skilled workforce.
The Charleston Chamber believes Gov. Tomblin’s education reform legislation (Senate Bill 359) is a critical first step in transforming education in West Virginia.
The bill’s intent is to improve student achievement and ensure that taxpayers get the highest return on their educational investment.
Some highlights of the legislation include:
- Expanding alternative teaching certification programs, including Teach for America, to address the shortage of qualified teachers in critical needs areas. This program would permit diverse group of leaders with a record of achievement to teach in low-income schools where the job openings for teachers outnumbers the available teachers in the community. Nearly every other state in the country implements this program.
- Enhancing local control of public education (flexibility)
- Establishing a commission to review the governance and costs of 55 county boards of education. (cost reduction)
- Requiring instructional days to be 180 days per year.
To read the full bill, please click HERE.
The Governor believes that West Virginia must foster an educational environment that raises student achievement. We couldn’t agree more.
We need your help to encourage our Legislature to work together and get this important legislation passed. This state needs a skilled and educated workforce for our businesses to thrive.
This legislation is currently being reviewed by the Senate Education Committee. This is step one in the legislative process of this bill becoming law.
We are urging those committee members to consider this bill and address the positive and exciting things it will do for West Virginia’s future.
Please contact members of the Senate Education Committee TODAY and let them know you support the Governor’s education reform bill.
Here’s their contact info in alphabetical order:
Senator Clark Barnes
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7973
Senator Mitch Carmichael
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7855
Senator Truman Chafin
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7808
Senator Bill Cole
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7843
Senator Larry Edgell
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7827
Senator Daniel Hall
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7807
Senator William Laird
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7849
Senator Robert Plymale
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7937
Senator Ron Stollings
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7939
Senator Gregory Tucker
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7906
Senator John Unger
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7933
Senator Erik Wells
Capitol Phone: (304) 357-7841
If you know the Charleston Regional Chamber of Commerce, you know we don’t bang the drum about every little issue at the Legislature. If we weigh in, it’s important.
Nothing is more important than educating our children and grandchildren, who will carry the Mountain State forward to the future.
This legislation is a step in the right direction for change that can help move West Virginia from a state that scores very poorly in most educational attainment categories, to one that is more ready to compete on a global scale.
It’s time to put students and education first.