New plan would allow JCPS teachers to protest in Frankfort without shutting down schools

Deal in the works to allow teacher protests to continue without JCPS class cancellations

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A deal is in the works that would allow nearly 500 JCPS teachers to protest in Frankfort without the threat of another sickout and missed classroom time.

JCPS and the Jefferson County Teachers Association are working on the deal, which would allow three representatives from every JCPS school to go to Frankfort to continue in the protests that have led to two straight sickout days and three in the last week across the district.

“This will allow a number of teachers, approaching 500, to be in Frankfort on each of the remaining four days of the legislative session without causing JCPS to have to close,” JCTA President Brent McKim told WAVE 3 News’ Sara Rivest.

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McKim described the conditions of the agreement.

“Under the plan, each school can send three teachers each of the remaining four days, and to minimize the impact on students, we ask that they be different each of those four days, so no student ever is without their teacher more than once,” he said.

McKim also said that by going to Frankfort, many of the teachers likely would be observing the legislative process for the first time, which could be a valuable learning experience.

“Clearly what we’ve seen is that educators are very uneasy about what is happening legislatively in Frankfort, and are wanting to be there, and be part of that process on behalf of their students and their schools,” he said.

Teachers have been protesting House Bill 205, which would create a private school scholarship tax credit, something public-school educators said would cut into their already-shrinking budgets.

School districts in Oldham, Bullitt and Meade counties joined JCPS in Thursday’s sickout.

JCTA said no teacher will have to use their own sick and personal days to go. If a teacher doesn’t approve of the agreement, they do not have to follow it.

KY120 said they support the decisions individual districts make for themselves.

Tim Hill of JCPS leads said this was a proactive move by the district that has been getting mixed reactions from teachers in his group. He personally will be in his classroom and won’t be calling for another sickout, but he can’t speak for the entire group. Hill said he has good faith in his teachers to do what they feel is best.

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