Monongalia County Board of Education supports its teachers

14 Feb

On Tuesday night, the Monongalia County Board of Education unanimously voted on a resolution that would support competitive wages for educators within the county. With supplemental funds coming from the levy, entry-level teachers in Monongalia County are already making the highest salary in West Virginia. Service personnel make the second-highest. A coalition of teachers, Nancy Jamison, Heather DeLuca-Nestor and Sam Brunett stood before the board and expressed their appreciation for the resolution, but also elaborated on why competitive pay is important for not only them, but all teachers in the state.

“We just want the best education for the students in West Virginia and in Mon County. That’s why we’re fighting for lots of things that we’re fighting for,” Heather DeLuca-Nestor said. “However, PA is right across the line and what’s stopping them [teachers] from leaving?”

On Tuesday night the House of Delegates passed a new bill calling for a 2 percent increase in teacher’s salaries this year with a 1 percent increase each year for the following three years. This is following the previous bill that only called for a 1 percent increase each year for the next five years.

The Board of Education also recognized 10 teachers who had earned their National Board Certification – the most that Monongalia County has seen according to the board.  The National Board Certification is the highest qualification that a teacher can earn. To earn this certification, teachers must meet five standards adopted by the National Board and incorporate the standards into how and what they teach in the classroom. According to Pre-K teacher, Jessica Bradley, she had to preform many assessments on her students during the process as well as come up with new ways to assess her students given what she was learning.

Bradley is the first person at Skyview Elementary to earn this certification.

“It’s been very exciting,” Bradley said. “I’m glad I’ve been able to prove to myself what I can do for my students an my school.”

President Barbara Parsons acknowledged the hard work that goes into becoming National Board Certified and thanked all of those who had earned the certification for their dedication to their work. Many of those who were recognized also thanked the Board for their support, physically and financially.

Seeing how all of the educators in the room came together to support each other gave me a new way of looking at teachers. I’ve always appreciated the teachers that I had through elementary school to college, but a great teacher makes an impact on anyone’s life. Whether it be though learning or their support with things outside of the classroom, teachers really do care about their students and the staff that they work with. Not many people want to give credit where it’s due, but as cliche as it sounds, teachers are the foundation of pretty much everything. We owe a lot more than crappy base salaries to these people, especially because they know what stigma is placed on teachers and teacher pay, but still pursue the career because they care that much.

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