The ongoing battle between West Virginia's teacher groups and their opponents has become part of the debate over Gov. Joe Manchin's special session agenda, The Associated Press reports.
The West Virginia Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers-West Virginia "question whether the governor is blaming teachers for the state's poor showing in several education categories," the article said. "They also argue he's pursuing federal funds at the expense of hiring protections and other rights."
WVEA President Dale Lee broached the topic of bad teachers during his group's pre-session press conference, meant to raise objections to the overall focus of Manchin's agenda.
"Most teachers out there are doing an exemplary job," he is quoted as saying. "But let's be clear: teachers out there and the WVEA want the best in our profession. We don't protect bad teachers, as is portrayed out there. All we protect is due process rights."
State schools Superintendent Steve Paine sought to address notion of protecting "bad" teachers during a recent appearance before the House Education Committee, the article said.
While calling it "the part that we all don't want to talk about, that I need to talk about," Paine then added, "I need to use a term other than 'bad.' Let's say, 'not as successful,'" AP reported.