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#RedforEd Teachers Shut Down Kentucky’s Largest School District with Sickout to Protest at State Capitol

Arizona teachers turned out in Red for Ed shirts during their strike that ended this month. |Ralph Freso/Getty Images
Ralph Freso/Getty Images
MICHAEL PATRICK LEAHY

A teacher sickout shut down Kentucky’s largest school district on Tuesday as educators associated with the #RedforEd movement abandoned their job duties to protest at the state capitol in Frankfort against legislation they oppose.

The Courier-Journal reported on developments Tuesday afternoon:

Despite a joint effort from Kentucky’s largest school district and its union to avert another teacher sickout, Jefferson County Public Schools is shuttered Tuesday as hundreds of its teachers are expected to protest at the Capitol.

The 98,000-student district did not make the call to close school until late Monday night. But earlier in the evening JCPS had signaled its concerns by canceling ACT testing, which was scheduled for Tuesday.

Dozens of teachers clad in red arrived in Frankfort early, filling up a meeting room where lawmakers would hear several education bills.

As Breitbart News reported last week, teachers oppose two pieces of legislation currently under consideration during the final days of this session of the Kentucky General Assembly.

One bill, House bill 525, proposes changes to to the administrative board that deals with the retirements system in ways KY 120 United, the #RedforEd affiliated group in the state, does not like, while a second, House bill 205, would provide tax credits to private individuals who set up scholarships for students to attend private schools.

Breitbart News reported on the #RedforEd movement last month at the beginning of this series:

This teachers union effort, called #RedforEd, has its roots in the very same socialism that President Trump vowed in his 2019 State of the Union address to stop, and it began in its current form in early 2018 in a far-flung corner of the country before spreading nationally. Its stated goals–higher teacher pay and better education conditions–are overshadowed by a more malevolent political agenda: a leftist Democrat uprising designed to flip purple or red states to blue, using the might of a significant part of the education system as its lever

Late Monday, Gov. Matt Bevin posted a video on his official site criticizing the teachers for participating in yet another sickout.

“Parents across Kentucky are getting a little weary of . . the idea of pretending to be sick when you’re not,”  Bevin began.

“This is about the students, and it should be about the students, not about what’s in the best interest of the KEA [Kentucky Education Association], or any of these other groups that want to attract attention and resources and power to themselves. This is about the teachers themselves and their ability to do the job of educating kids,” the governor continued.

“The idea that we would be calling in sick–anybody–and doing it at the expense of kids, including testing for ACTs and prep for this. The ability of kids whose livelihoods, as they head into the post-secondary worlds are dependent on what’s happening now, being disrupted because of the handful of people who are putting their own interests ahead of the kids is just not acceptable, ” he added.

“The fact that the teachers union in Jefferson County, for example, is pretending that they’re not supporting this but, meanwhile, are reloading sick day hours into the accounts of teachers so they can call in sick when they’re not sick, walk out on the students when they’re not sick, pretend to be doing this for the students, when it’s not,” he noted.

“This is the kind of stuff that the taxpayers of Kentucky, which of those of you watching this, you should be offended by this, you really should be,” Bevin concluded.

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