A group of west Kentucky teachers protested the passage of a pension reform bill on the steps of the state capitol building Monday.
They said the bill threatens public education in Kentucky. The bill passed on Friday switches future workers to a 401-k style plan and cuts several benefits for current workers, including death benefits for police officers and sick leave for teachers.
Calloway County elementary school teacher Gina Crider said the protest is about more than just being angry about the pension reform bill.
“It’s really about the future of public education...and our children. It’s not just about the salaries of teachers or protecting our pension, it’s that we recognize that this is an assault on public education,” said Crider.
Crider said she believes the changes will make attracting new teachers to Kentucky incredibly difficult. She said potential budget cuts threaten public education - making privatized schools more appealing.
She said a common message among the crowd is “we will remember in November.”