Kentucky governor 'guarantees' children sexually assaulted, poisoned due to school closures

Teachers have staged numerous demonstrations in Frankfort during this session. They filled the capitol building Monday April 2
Kentucky Lawmakers Override Governor Veto on Tax, Budget Bills
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15 April, 2018

After Kentucky lawmakers voted to override the budget veto, Bevin spoke with a reporter from the Courier-Journal.

"I guarantee you somewhere today, a child was physically harmed or ingested poison because they were home alone because a single parent didn't have any money to take care of them", he continued.

The veto of the budget plan was overturned by a 66 to 28 margin in the House, and by a 25 to 12 margin in the Senate.

Educators want those bills to become law because they generate new revenue which will restore funding to public education - funding that Bevin proposed cutting. In one place, he said he'd met with Senate and House leaders week to indicate "more responsible tactics to pay for for 100% of the asked education financing". Presently, educators need to work for only 27 years before receiving a deferred-benefits pension, while teachers hired after the end of 2018 will need to work until age 65 or until their years of service combined with their age exceed 87 (i.e. a teacher who begins work at 22 could retire at 55, assuming he/she faces no gaps in employment during those 33 years of work).

Louisville's WDRB-TV interviewed Bevin outside the Capitol Friday about the rally.

"We want to come up with a smart, thoughtful, more balanced approach", Bevin said at a news conference where he announced his vetoes.

After thousands of teachers rallied at Kentucky's state capitol on Friday, the state's governor said their absence from the classroom did serious harm to children. A survey done in 2011 and summarized in 2013 found that two percent of 5-year-olds and 6-year-olds who lived with their mother were left alone some of the time they weren't in school; that proportion increased to almost 30 percent of 14-year-olds. Lawmakers agreed Saturday to let the state borrow up to $110 million to pay that debt.

"And they serve to discourage anyone from wanting to be a teacher in Kentucky when the governor is bashing them on an nearly daily basis", McKim told WDRB News. "I don't agree with these comments & I find them repulsive".

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"They thought it was personal then, but it's really personal now", Hatfield said. It also limits new sick days teachers can put toward their retirement. "But what they're doing now impacts my students and their students".

Plus, the budget would eliminate several ancillary education programs like teacher professional development and grants for textbooks and other instructional materials.

Sherri Botts teaches fifth grade in Lexington.

In Oklahoma, teachers ended two weeks of walkouts Thursday, shifting their focus to electing pro-education candidates in November.

"There are protests and rallies going on all across this commonwealth".

Pension is often the only income source after leaving the school system; according to the Herald-Leader, retired teachers in Kentucky can not collect Social Security. "I feel like it's a cop-out - we have let them win by showing them they can behave however they want, and we'll eventually get exhausted and go home".

This post has been updated.


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