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The Lie: Evolution
 

EXODUS MANDATE-WV


2019 WEST VIRGINIA SCHOOL NEWS

Go straight to the most recent news item

THE FOLLOWING HEADLINES ARE SIMILAR TO HEADLINES FROM THE LAST SEVERAL YEARS.  THE SAME (OR WORSE) WILL HAPPEN NEXT YEAR! THESE INCIDENTS REPRESENT ONLY A TINY FRACTION OF WHAT REALLY GOES ON IN THE SCHOOLS OF THE SMALL "BIBLE BELT" STATE OF WEST VIRGINIA! MANY OTHER SERIOUS INCIDENTS ARE NOT MADE PUBLIC.

SADLY, WHAT HAPPENED TO THESE CHILDREN CANNOT BE CHANGED. DO YOU WANT TO TAKE THE CHANCE THAT YOUR CHILD WILL MAKE IT UNHARMED? EVEN IF A SERIOUS EVENT DOES NOT SHATTER YOUR CHILD, THERE IS NO WAY TO AVOID EXPOSING YOUR CHILD TO THINGS THAT WILL HARM HIM/HER EMOTIONALLY, MENTALLY, AND/OR SPIRITUALLY.

If you think that your school is an exception you are willingly blind.

THERE IS AN URGENT NEED TO GET OUR CHILDREN TO THE SAFETY OF HOMESCHOOLS OR CHRISTIAN SCHOOLS. THE DANGER OF THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS HAS CONVINCED A LOT OF NON-CHRISTIANS TO ABANDON THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS. CHRISTIANS HAVE THE BIBLICAL MANDATE TO EDUCATE THEIR CHILDREN ACCORDING TO DEUTERONOMY 6:7 AND COLOSSIANS 2:3. 

WE MUST RESCUE OUR CHILDREN!

"Christian parents are _commanded_ to place their children under godly and Christian teaching, not neo-pagan or humanistic instruction. Whether we acknowledge it or not, only two choices remain-- obedience or disobedience to God’s commands. (See Col. 2:8; 2 Cor. 10:3-5; Deut. 6:1-9; Mal. 4:6; 2 Cor. 6:14-19 along with Luke 6:40. Matt. 22:37-38 and Eph. 6:4)" E. Ray Moore.

In the governor’s own words
From Governor Jim Justice’s 2019 State of the State Address: “Tonight, I would -- I would have said before, make education our centerpiece.  You see, I've really been a believer that education is the hot spot that really can change our image. .. So I said, let's make education our centerpiece.  It in itself, that stake we put in the sand right there, that very stake, has changed a lot of our image. Now, we decided to make education our centerpiece.  I am telling you, in my world, at least, we have made education our centerpiece. Now, we have decided to invest.  We got rid of A through F.  We absolutely got rid of so much of the ridiculous testing, and we put control back in the local hands as much as we can. We absolutely gave a 5 percent teacher's pay raise, and we ended up giving a 5 percent…” Karl’s comment: Only a public school educated fool would fall for that flapping-jaw flimflam. West Virginia public schools are a flat out failure. He admitted it in his 2017 speech and nothing has changed! The A-F school ratings would have made good propaganda, but it was a farce. Removing testing is a scam to hide the lack of knowledge students’ possess.

WE MUST RESCUE OUR CHILDREN!!

“The difference between insane asylums and our public schools is that in the insane asylum you have to show some improvement before you can get out.”
Anonymous

Please look at the school news below as well as for other years (along with my articles) for documentation about why tax-payers should “just say NO!” to pouring more money down the government school rat-hole.

Among these headlines you can easily follow common threads of drug abuse, sex (including teachers with students and promotion of sexual perversion), lack of disciple, violence, poor academic standards, crime, anti-Christianity, and wanting more and more money “for the kids”.

Sex crimes in the education system are rampart and traceable to the decay of society which is closely connected to humanism taking over “public” schools. Parents in Kanawha County warned of this in 1974. Now, we are simply reaping what is sown.

The sin of sexual abuse is inexcusable, but the fact is that it is rare that church personnel molests a child. That is not so with school personnel. You will be amazed at the reports of school personnel sex with students throughout the WV School news headlines. See the comments on this issue on the main WV News page. Also, teachers, unlike preachers, do not get scandalized for their adultery and other sex escapades with adults. See the March 26, 2009 headline “W.Va. teacher charged with sex assault of teen” for a sad, but pertinent point. (Note: Prior to 2018 I deleted names of teachers accused of sexual assaults. I changed that policy after having difficulty checking entries for duplications.)

The moral sickness in the school system goes all the way back to 1977--a couple of years after the Kanawha County Parents sounded the alarm.

(Note: Some of the links are closed by the media outlet after a period of time. Several of the headlines came from Charleston Daily Mail and Gazette on-line searches. All articles can be found by contacting the news source.)

THE TEST THAT TELLS THE TALE OF TRUTH: “The Nation’s Report Card” National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) from the National Center for Education Statistics.

“The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is the largest nationally representative and continuing assessment of what America's students know and can do in various subject areas.” (http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/about/) Webster defines “proficient” as “good at doing something.” (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/proficient)

New results will be posted when they are available.

Informative links:

http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/states/
http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/mathematics/
http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/reading/

See West Virginia text scores on the Nation’s Report Card.

Be sure to see the LATEST REPORT OF WEST VIRGINIA PUBLIC SCHOOL TEST PERFORMANCE.

This chart shows the incredible percentage of tax money that is wasted.
(This is the first year posted in the WV News pages, but previous years were no better.)

https://budget.wv.gov/

---------------------------------------

(Note: Some of the links below are closed by the media outlet after a period of time. All articles can be found by contacting the news source.)

2019 WEST VIRGINIA SCHOOL NEWS

Man charged after school receives threats on tip line 12 -25-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/local/man-charged-after-school-receives-threats-on-tip-line/
Bass is accused of calling the Kanawha County Schools tip line 14 times on Dec. 16 and 17 warning that someone was going shoot or blow up South Charleston Middle School. Bass also allegedly mentioned an elementary school in one of the calls. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.
Updated: Dec 27, 2019 Kanawha County Schools spokeswoman Briana Warner says 22-year-old Thomas Bass is currently employed as a cook at the South Charleston Middle School.
https://www.wowktv.com/news/local/south-charleston-man-charged-with-threatening-schools-works-as-school-cook/

A former WV assistant principal had an inappropriate relationship with a student. He was allowed to resign and continue teaching in Arizona -- until Arizona found out. 12-14-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/a-former-wv-assistant-principal-had-an-inappropriate-relationship-with/article_389fdc43-3597-50ff-96b2-602938a92f54.html
Then-University High assistant principal Pete Cheesebrough admitted to his superiors in March 2017 that he had texted a student, despite earlier telling them he hadn’t. He admitted that he had met with her, despite his superiors forbidding it. And he admitted that they had been in his truck together, despite previously denying that, too. He said the student kissed him after she turned 18; she said he kissed her. This is all according to an order, signed by West Virginia state Schools Superintendent Steve Paine, in which Paine nevertheless chose not to suspend or revoke Cheesebrough’s teaching certification. Instead, Paine opted only to temporarily nix his administrator certification. Cheesebrough left West Virginia and began teaching Arizona high schoolers using his West Virginia certification, said Stefan Swiat, the Arizona Department of Education’s public information officer. On Friday, the Arizona State Board of Education did what Paine didn’t.

In a voice vote with no nays heard, it revoked all of Cheesebrough’s certifications over the West Virginia allegations that happened back in 2017…When Paine chose not to revoke the teaching certification, he cited not wanting to affect Cheesebrough’s Arizona job as a reason. This week, Paine said he couldn’t speak about his decision because “it’s a personnel matter.” He referred a reporter to his order, which the West Virginia Department of Education provided…hile the order shows State Police investigated, he was never charged, and he and the student both said they never had sex. Monongalia County Prosecuting Attorney Perri DeChristopher said “the evidence gathered by the State Police did not support a criminal charge.”… “Moreover, Mr. Cheesebrough would not have stressed in his emails to [the student] how ‘imperative’ it was that she not post anything on social media or talk to anyone and that his career and perhaps his freedom would be on the line.” Paine went on to note that Cheesebrough changed what he said to supervisors over time, and Paine called it lying. Paine noted 86 text messages between Cheesebrough and the student in late 2016, despite him originally saying they hadn’t texted. Karl’s comment: You can easily follow the thread of school personnel sex perversions throughout the WV School news headlines. Also see the comments on this issue on the main WV News page and the June 1, 2008.

'Students caught in the grips of real addiction': School employees ask Harrison, WV, Board of Health for increased vaping education 12-12-19
https://www.wvnews.com/theet/news/students-caught-in-the-grips-of-real-addiction-school-employees/article_4a417511-5119-5985-8d53-6742554ef66e.html
“I can stand here and tell you unequivocally, we have a problem,” said Bridgeport Prevention Resource Officer Jamie Hamrick, before pulling out a plastic tote full of vaping devices confiscated from Bridgeport schools during the current and previous school year. Students in Harrison County are suffering from active addiction to nicotine, according to Robert C. Byrd High School teacher and Students Against Drunk Driving sponsor Rachel Skubis. “It’s a very real, very pervasive problem,” she said. “Our students are caught in the grips of real addiction. They cannot even make it through a class period, often.”… Devices containing marijuana have been found in schools, and now all confiscated devices are tested for THC, Hamrick said. Skubis said she fears what else students may be taking in through the vaping devices…The school system has had difficulty detecting the devices, according to Liberty High School counselor Jeff Rush. “The biggest problem is the concealability of these items. It’s so easy for them to stick in their shirt, their pockets, underwear,” he said. “There are limitations on what can be searched, so it makes it hard to be effective. If they deny it, we really don’t have any actual proof to address." Karl’s comment: If you will not believe my words, just look at what I put in blue font above and below. Vaping is not the only narcotic issue in West Virginia government schools. See the next two entries below and search the subject in this and previous years West Virginia School News pages.

Adults not aware of how students get Juuls in high school 12-11-19
Metro Kanawha West, page 4 (a reprint of her 10-4-19 article at https://www.wvgazettemail.com/flipside/flipside_opinion/adults-not-aware-of-how-students-get-juuls-in-high/article_47b83606-20d0-5b3a-acbc-820c690e0a41.html)

Talking to various adults, I’ve found that, most of the time, they are very unaware of how it actually works with the Juuling in high school. For a 14-year-old freshman-to-be getting Juul pods, there has to be something happening, and there is. One way they obtain the pods is by seniors (who are of legal age to buy them) selling them. It might sound insane, but considering how many kids are addicted, they make a lot of money. Teens so addicted to something will go to great lengths to get it.

It’s almost comical walking through the hallways hearing kids ask each other for Juuls. There have even been fights at the school over them. People physically harming one another because they cannot get enough of a substance.

Sometimes, you will walk down the hallways and see someone try to inconspicuously trade money for Juul pods. Watching it happen, it would seem almost more logical to just be open about it. Huddling in a corner while putting your hands low and clasping them almost screams, “I am dealing.”

Karl’s comment: This was written by a current George Washington High School student. On 1-8-19 her headline was “The JUUL epidemic in West Virginia schools” that opened with, When people hear the word “epidemic,” they usually think of a rapidly spreading medical disease. Unfortunately, this is a word that can perfectly describe how JUULs are having an impact on West Virginia schools. (https://www.wvgazettemail.com/flipside/flipside_opinion/the-juul-epidemic-in-west-virginia-schools-flipside/article_8bdef3b9-6e37-5ab5-9435-6cb0eefbcceb.html) FYI: George Washington High School is located in an elite white-collar area of Charleston, WV.

Prescription drug reaction sends five W.Va. students to hospital 12-3-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/prescription-drug-reaction-sends-five-wva-students-to-hospital
Officials say an adverse reaction to a prescription drug sent five West Virginia high school students to the hospital. Lewis County High School Central Office Administrator Chris Derico told news outlets that officials think one student brought in the medication on Monday and shared it with others. Karl’s comment: There are lots of drug issues in government schools that go unnoticed or unreported.

Sheriff: Cabell Midland High School student facing charges after threats 11-22-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/sheriff-cabell-midland-high-school-student-facing-charges-after-threats
Cabell County’s sheriff said a Cabell Midland High School student is facing charges after making threats. Harrison Grant Taylor, 18, was charged Friday with four counts of stalking and one count of making terroristic threats, Sheriff Chuck Zerkle said. Karl’s comment: See the 4-17 and 4-16 entries below. Why do parents leave their children in these danger zones?

Kanawha school board relaxes dress code to allow tube tops, nose piercings and more 11-22-19
Charleston Gazette-Mail 11-22-19, pg. 3A
The Kanawha County Board of Education voted Thursday to erase multiple countywide bans from the student dress code, paving the way for other-than-ear piercings, baggy clothes, and shorts and skirts shorter than mid-thigh…The countywide bans are now lifted on pants worn below the waist, tube and halter tops, chain and spiked jewelry and other items. Karl’s comment: I would say, “You gotta be kidding me!” But, the thug school system is simply being ran by the thugs .

Vice principal hurt in altercation with high school student in Ripley, W.Va 11-20-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Police-Vice-principal-hurt-in-altercation-with-high-school-student-in-Ripley-WVa-565234422.html
We have more details about a fight between a student and vice principal at Ripley High School that ended with the administrator suffering a broken ankle. The incident happened Wednesday, and Ripley Police say it broke out over a cell phone. A female student who had film footage of an earlier fight between two students had her cell phone confiscated by Vice Principal Jeff Haskins. When that student tried to get the phone back, she hit him and, as he was moving away from her, he broke his ankle, police say. Ripley Police Chief Bradley Anderson is asking everyone involved to wait for all the facts to come out. Karl’s comment: Welcome to another public school cell block.

WV Department of Education data shows graduation rates hit historic highs 11-18-19
https://www.wvnews.com/news/wvnews/wv-department-of-education-data-shows-graduation-rates-hit-historic/article_22520a29-2790-5597-9a3d-204ffc0aa88e.html
The 2018-19 school year data shows an increase in the four-year rate from 90.2 percent to 91.4 percent and an increase in the five-year rate from 90 percent to 90.7 percent. According to a press release from the WVDE, these advances represent the highest graduation rates recorded in the state’s history. Karl’s comment: Graduating uneducated students is a sham and the press release is propaganda. Here is a 12-18 article: “About a quarter of West Virginia public and private high school students who graduated in 2017 and enrolled in the state’s public colleges in fall 2017 were required to enroll in remedial education classes.” (https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/a-quarter-of-college-going-wv-grads-sent-to-remedial/article_275e95e2-b5b2-514f-8d19-5e127e329e96.html) and a 2017 article: “A growing percentage of high school graduates in West Virginia who attend the state’s public colleges need to take remedial classes to be ready for entry-level college classes.” (https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/more-college-going-students-in-wv-need-remedial-classes/article_5c5bc8f5-3985-50fd-8a38-21e1f7408873.html)

Mingo County student charged, accused of making 'kill list' 11-15-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/mingo-county-student-charged-accused-of-making-kill-list
The Williamson Daily News reported he is a student at Tug Valley High School. A criminal complaint said Wood mentioned that students had been put on a kill list. A search of Wood’s computer found 24 names of students on a kill list, and a list of 26 people to be spared, the complaint said. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

WV public schools lost another 4,120 students in decades-long enrollment drop 11-14-19
West Virginia’s public schools lost another roughly 4,120 students from last school year to this one, dropping statewide enrollment to 261,630, according to numbers released Thursday by the state Department of Education. It’s a 1.6 percent drop statewide. The vast majority of counties lost students, and the statewide impact will likely be millions fewer dollars for public schools — the state school aid funding formula is largely based on enrollment. Thirty-six of the state’s 55 counties now have fewer public schoolers overall than the state lost from last school year to this one. State schools Superintendent Steve Paine briefly mentioned the statewide drop number at Thursday’s state Board of Education meeting. He raised concern about homeschooling being abused by those wanting to escape public school accountability for attendance and behavior. The drop last school year from the school year before that was 4,860. Karl’s comment: Hopefully the cause is people rescuing their children to home and Christian schools. The “homeschooling being abused” concern is bogus. Those instances would be very rare.

As rules governing W.Va. charter schools roll out, teachers union announces plans to sue 11-14-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/11/14/as-rules-governing-w-va-charter-schools-roll-out-teachers-union-announces-plans-to-sue/
Fred Albert, president of American Federation of Teachers-WV (said) “Based upon that, we are intending to send a letter of intent to sue over the charter school part. We feel it is unconstitutional.” Albert alluded to the state constitution’s requirement for a thorough and efficient education. Karl’s comment: Of course teacher unions are fighting this, because the unions will have less control over “education.” BWAHAHA on the “thorough and efficient education” part! West Virginia students have not had that for many years as documented in these WV School News pages. Regarding charters, they are not the answer to the problem.

EMS Students Celebrate Day of the Dead 11-6-19
https://www.theintermountain.com/news/local-news/2019/11/ems-students-celebrate-day-of-the-dead/
(photo) The Inter-Mountain by Haley Gordon Students in the eighth-grade Spanish class at Elkins Middle School pose with their Day of the Dead creations. The Mexican holiday is traditionally celebrated at the beginning of November. Karl’s comment: The table has several miniature skulls and the bulletin board is covered with life-sized white cut-out skulls on a black background. There is an “R.I.P” fake cemetery stone on the floor. From the website, https://dayofthedead.holiday/, “One time a year, our departed come back to celebrate with us… Families create ofrendas (Offerings) to honor their departed family members that have passed…The offerings are believed to encourage visits from the land of the dead as the departed souls hear their prayers, smell their foods and join in the celebrations!” The website has several photos of people with make-up that makes their faces resemble a skull. From https://dayofthedead.holiday/sugar-skull/: “Skull imagery has a long history dating back to the traditions of pre-Columbian civilizations. The Aztecs had several festivals of remembrance where they would worship the Goddess Mictecacihuatl, ruler of the afterlife and keeper of the dead. Mictecacihuatl was often represented as a skeleton, adorned with a crown of flowers and skulls.” This is pagan religion. In the largest county in the state, religion rules.

South Charleston High School placed on lockdown after bullet found 11-5-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/south-charleston-high-school-placed-on-lockdown-after-bullet-found
South Charleston High School was placed on precautionary lockdown Tuesday morning after a bullet was found in the school. Karl’s comment: You can see lots of lockdown items on these WV School News pages. This was sent to me a couple of weeks after this post:

Paine believes consistency in policy is key to raise NAEP scores 11-4-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/11/04/paine-believes-consistency-in-policy-is-key-to-raise-naep-scores/
State Superintendent of Schools Dr. Steve Paine says it’s going to take consistency and accountability to see improvement in the state’s National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) scores… He cited research by Professor of Education Emeritus at the Stanford Graduate School of Education Linda Darling-Hammond, by saying that it takes three years for state policy to impact state achievement. Paine has been in the position since April 2017, saying the results reflect the policies in place in 2016… West Virginia’s 2019 average score for fourth-graders totaled 231, the lowest score for the state since 2005. Paine said on ‘Talkline’ that the state will see increases in the 2021 results, as the test results are shown every two years. “The results will get better and I will just about guarantee we will see increases in two years,” he said. “We are doing all the right things.” Karl’s comment: The superintendent said, “I will just about guarantee we will see increases in two years.” I say, “I GUARANTEE the scores will NOT improve.”

High school student identified as source of heroin-laced vape pen 11-4-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Teens-become-ill-after-using-heroin-laced-vape-pen-564267061.html
Investigators said they found the source of heroin-laced vape pens that ended up with two high school students being hospitalized after overdosing in the Morgantown area…The suspect has been identified as a high school student who's underage, according to a news release from the Morgantown Police Department. Police say that student distributed at least one of the devices. Karl’s comment: This article does not indicate it happened in a school, but only the willingly blind would doubt that those vapes, and more drugs, are inside schools.

Does Homeschooling Really “Cost” School Districts Millions? 10-23-19
https://hslda.org/content/hs/state/wv/20191023-WV-does-homeschooling-really-cost-school-districts-millions.aspx
Karl’s comment: Usually I comment at the end of a news item. This one is special. It is a Homeschool Legal Defense Association rebuttal and expose of a mainstream media news item that attacks homeschooling. The article is “Homeschooling cuts about $2 million from Harrison School System's funding” (10-13-19) posted at
https://www.wvnews.com/news/wvnews/homeschooling-cuts-about-million-from-harrison-school-system-s-funding/article_9e1caa3b-df7a-51e9-8bb3-6ab7f88eaace.html I have included almost the entire article.


A recent WVnews article by Kailee Gallahan claims that “homeschooling cuts about $2 million from Harrison School systems funding.” However, her reporting that the loss of 582 students who homeschool in the county “equates to a loss of $2.5 million and the potential for more than 35 school positions” was both misleading and factually incorrect. Masquerading as a news piece, the article was a thinly veiled attack on homeschooling, built on quotes from three Harrison County school officials.

“More students, more funding, more teachers…”

The article claims that homeschooling hurts Harrison County schools and, by implication, public education in West Virginia by depriving the county of resources it could use to serve its student population. If this claim is true, one might be interested in understanding how such a situation could be addressed. (Surely not by making it harder to homeschool, but by fixing a school funding formula that punishes school systems based on how many homeschoolers there are in the individual districts.)

But Gallahan’s claim is false.

Harrison County lost nothing because of homeschooling. According to West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) enrollment figures, Harrison County did not lose 582 students or have their budget cut by $2.5 million. Rather, the school system’s enrollment numbers went from 10,753 to 10,734, a statistically insignificant 19 fewer enrolled students between 2018 and 2019.

Gallahan reports that there are 582 homeschooled students in Harrison County. This represents a significant increase compared to the number from some years ago—which, according to Harrison County Attendance Director Jim Kirby, was approximately 180-200 in 2004. But these numbers actually represent savings to the county and state.

Adding up the reported number of homeschooled students in West Virginia (over 11,000) and multiplying that figure by the per-student funding (around $12,000), the total cost comes out to a whopping $132,000,000. This represents the amount of money the state of West Virginia would have to pay if all those homeschool students were enrolled in public schools.

In addition to these savings, the state and the schools get the tax revenue associated with the homeschooled students. Assuming an average tax bill of $4,000 with property and income tax, that represents $44,000,000 (not including the state’s 6% sales tax . . . likely a large source of revenue from homeschooling families). The total revenue for the schools, by these very rough approximations, is $176,000,000. That basically pays for the teachers’ salary increases over the last two years as well as other expenditures.

Don’t all those taxes, without any of the costs associated with public school enrollment, mean the schools can focus all the resources on the otherwise-lower student population? Why not a little pat on the back for the homeschooling community?

The logical fallacy—that the failure of homeschooled students to enroll in public school entails an automatic loss of revenue to the state—represents a faulty view of economics. Gallahan argues that by not enrolling in school, the homeschoolers are costing the county money. This is simply wrong. The homeschool population in the county costs the schools nothing aside from the money paid to staff who file the insubstantial amount of paperwork now required under a modernized WV homeschool law.

But even though Gallahans’s facts and conclusions are wrong, the article is insightful as to the attitudes toward home education by at least some public-school officials in West Virginia.

Is truancy the main problem?

Citing no numbers of any kind, but merely echoing WVDE Director Kirby’s assertion that truancy is a major problem with the Harrison County homeschooling population, Gallahan paints homeschoolers as fugitives.

“Truancy is our main issue,” Kirby told WVNews. “We’ve gone through the court system to make sure their students are coming to school and the next thing you know they are wanting to homeschool their children to avoid that process. . . . We cannot intervene, we cannot prevent, and we cannot deny.”

Mr. Kirby should know better.

“Truancy” can be prosecuted as a criminal offense or a status offense against either a parent or a child. However, what Mr. Kirby and the rest of the public education establishment should consider is that there are often valid reasons that children miss school for more than three days, which is when the truancy statute kicks in.

Despite Mr. Kirby’s assertion to the contrary, there certainly is, and has been for decades, a procedure by which the school district can seek an order to deny home education if the superintendent has probable cause to believe a child’s education will be neglected or if there are other compelling reasons.

But painting with such a broad brush misses important issues. There are serious problems in public schools that cause children to resist going there. According to surveys by the US Department of Education, parents have many reasons for choosing home education; avoiding truancy proceedings is not among them.

But even when parents and children are subject to truancy proceedings, there are often reasonable and legitimate factors that explain these families’ challenges in getting children to go to school. It is a matter of fact that schools experience problems like verbal, physical, and sexual abuse by teachers toward their students. It is a matter of fact that bullying of children, both by teachers and by other students, occurs regularly, which cause anxiety, fear, and rebellion. Sometimes students become bored or feel school is useless. These are among the reasons given by families who pulled their children out of Harrison County schools. The recent stories about special education children being treated horribly helps explain why these parents are particularly concerned.

No one doubts that WV’s drug crisis could affect at least some truancy investigations. Nor is there a dispute that there are situations that merit truancy prosecution. But when students and families involved in truancy processes decide to try home education to address the underlying issues contributing to the truancy, what is wrong with that? And if it doesn’t work out and the parents decide to re-enroll the child in school, why should that be considered a problem?

Is this really about the money?

Gallahan’s focus on money is concerning. Is it really just about “more students, more funding and more teacher positions”? I wonder where the children and families fit into the equation? Could it be worth exploring the facts a bit better and looking at research that demonstrates how homeschooling actually delivers better outcomes? In addition to including accurate facts, journalists ought to include at least some mention of the other side of a story, shouldn’t they? Getting the facts wrong, excluding alternative perspectives, and reporting conclusions as “news” strongly hints at an ulterior motivation behind an article.

If Harrison County weren’t the home of the staunch anti-homeschooling State Senator Michael Romano, perhaps the article could be overlooked. Senator Romano has been a leading and vocal opponent of homeschooling, openly calling for significant increases in regulation. Is it such a stretch to see the possible outline of a new avenue of attack on homeschooling: it costs public schools too much?

It’s not that hard to visualize Senator Romano brandishing Gallahan’s article on the floor of the senate, or in the education committee, passionately arguing for more regulations on homeschoolers in order to make up for the money those mean, selfish homeschoolers are costing the public schools. I’ve witnessed such public addresses before at the state house on more than one occasion.

What happened to the 10% teacher’s pay raise?

The article also complains that the state aid formula isn’t “covering our teachers’ salaries.” (But not to worry: as school board member Tim Manchin points out, Harrison County taxpayers are “lucky” that they get to pay the extra school levy tax, since that helps make up the difference.) I wonder if Gallahan is aware that over the past two years in response to direct pressure, including strikes, the WV legislature has authorized a 10% raise for teachers? How is it possible that teachers’ salaries aren’t being covered?

Public education consumes the vast majority of tax dollars in the state of West Virginia, estimated at almost 50% of the state’s entire budget. WV also spends more than most states on public education when measured on a per-pupil basis. With the 10% salary increase, that number will keep going up. It’s a matter of public record that WV public education ranks at the very bottom of National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) testing. Is it fair to ask why public school officials are so concerned about homeschooling when they have such an opportunity for improvement in front of them? Wouldn’t it make more sense if they focused on improving the public schools to deliver better outcomes for the children in them—instead of complaining about how much money homeschooling children are costing (or rather, saving) them?

Education forum tackles charter schools, teacher position vacancies 10-16-19
https://www.theintermountain.com/news/local-news/2019/10/education-forum-tackles-charter-schools-teacher-position-vacancies/
The Randolph County Democratic Women’s Club hosted the forum at the Kump Education Center. Taking part were Delegate Cody Thompson, D-Randolph County; Dale Lee, president of the West Virginia Education Association; Fred Albert of the American Federation of Teachers-West Virginia; and Rachel Anger, vice president of the Randolph County Board of Education… First and foremost, I’m not a fan of charter schools,” said Thompson, who is a Randolph County social studies teacher… “Because of the charter school revision to this bill, the damage that will do to our public school system, draining public funds from our public schools into a private corporation entity, I cannot support that,” Thompson said… “California is an example,” Albert said. “They have a lot of charter schools in California. Just recently they passed legislation that would cap the number of charter schools they can have there, because they have found the charter schools have siphoned money off of the public schools…. The panel also talked about the issue of teacher position vacancies, which they said is a problem statewide. Karl’s comment: Although Charter Schools Are Deceptive, they strike fear into the teacher union monopoly of education. As pointed out, more than once, in these WV School News pages, lots of students are in school without permanent teachers. However, with today’s technology, almost every parent can successfully homeschool their children.

West Virginia reading, math scores below national average 8-31-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/west-virginia-reading-math-scores-below-national-average
West Virginia fourth-grade students showed drops in math and reading scores on the latest Nation's Report Card and remained below the national average. Results released Wednesday on the National Assessment of Educational Progress show fourth-graders in the state scored nine points below the national average math score and six points below the national average score in reading. The report says about 30% of fourth graders are proficient both in reading and in math, while about one-fourth of eighth graders are proficient in those subjects. In eighth grade, the average math score in West Virginia was down a point from 2017 and nine points below the national average. The average eighth-grade reading score fell 3 points, leaving it six points below the national average. Karl’s comment: See the next entry.

West Virginia group reacts to low test scores in reading and math among 4th graders 10-30-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia-group-reacts-to-low-test-scores-in-reading-and-math-among-4th-graders/
West Virginia 4th graders scored below the national average in reading and math on the National Assessment of Educational Progress. It measures what students in the United States know and can do in reading and math in grades 4 and 8…According to Kristin Anderson at the West Virginia Department of Education, the results show there is still work to be done. Anderson said the 2019 scores fell on NAEP in West Virginia for several reasons. “Policy implementation takes at least three years to manifest itself and the 2019 results are a result of instability within the system from 2015-17,” she said. Between 2015-17 she said West Virginia’s public education system experienced mandated review and revision of state academic content standards, statewide animosity around the A-F accountability system, unprecedented state aid cuts and more. She added that during the 2019 testing window there was a statewide work stoppage which she says contributed to a “poor testing environment”.

Representatives from the non-profit Read Aloud West Virginia call the results alarming. “Absolutely they are alarming and not entirely unexpected from what we’ve been seeing in the students and the families in this region,” said Amanda Schwartz the Communications & Development Director for Read Aloud West Virginia. “It is disheartening and concerning and cause for a greater understanding of the issue and a greater education of the public.” Read Aloud West Virginia listed the top three reasons they see for the low test scores in a release on their website.

The West Virginia Department of Education spokesperson said the opioid crisis has greatly contributed to poor attendance and poor performance by West Virginia students. Poverty has also been a contributing factor. Anderson add (sic) that West Virginia’s NAEP sample included more students with disabilities than any other state in the country at grade 4 because of the higher percent of special education students statewide. She said that West Virginia’s largest critical need area is in the area of certification for special education teachers. Karl’s comment: The excuses never end. The Read Aloud West Virginia’s three excuses are (1) screen time (2) opioid addiction and (3) economic distress. The West Virginia Department of Education spokesman listed (1) new policy changes and (2) more disabled students being tested. See the next entry.

Reading scores drop to lowest on record for WV 4th graders 10-30-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/reading-scores-drop-to-lowest-on-record-for-wv-4th-graders
Operations Director for Read Aloud WV, Dawn Miller, says early reading development begins at home…This year, 4th grade reading scores dropped to 213 on a 500 point scale. That's just under the national average of 219. President of the WVEA, Dale Lee, says the national testing only samples a small percentage of the state's population. "Some of the reason for low performance could be a number of low socioeconomic kids, testing students with special needs," Lee said. "It could be several things that lead to that. With all that being said though, no one's happy with where the test scores are." Miller says too much screen time can hinder a child's reading development. She encourages parents to put the phones down and pick up a paperback instead. Karl’s comment: The “screen time” excuse may be legitimate. Otherwise, Lee and Miller are just whistling in the wind.

The NAEP website (https://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/) has a lot of interesting data. I was able to find the following about West Virginia student test scores.

1. West Virginia 4 th and 8 th graders were tied for 48 th nationally in math. West Virginia 4 th and 8 th graders were tied for 47 th nationally in reading. THINK ABOUT THAT!!!!!

2. Math and reading scores have declined since 1992.

3. Both 4 th and 8 th grade writing scores are lower than the national average. Keep in mind if the national average is low that means West Virginia students are even worse.

Just search these WV School news pages for “test” over the years to prove that only someone willingly blind will keep their children in public schools for academic purposes. And, that does not include the pagan indoctrination!

Former school employee accused of sexually assaulting juvenile 10-28-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Man-accused-of-sexually-assaulting-juvenile--563893561.html
A man who worked at a school is charged with sexual assault of a victim under the age of 12. The incident the suspect is accused of happened in June of 2014, according to the criminal complaint. 53-year-old Alvie Napier, who lives in Huntington, is accused of sexually abusing a juvenile at a home in Culloden. The mother of the victim tells WSAZ her daughter came forward last month and told family members about the abuse. The mother says her daughter was 8 when the abuse began and that it continued up until this September…Parents of kids at West Teays Elementary School say Napier was a custodian there and also coached archery. A spokesperson with Putnam County Schools says Napier's employment there ended last month after school administration contacted CPS and got confirmation there was an open investigation. One West Teays mother is urging other parents to have a talk with their kids about the situation to make sure they haven't been harmed. Karl’s comment: You can easily follow the thread of school personnel sex perversions throughout the WV School news headlines. Also see the comments on this issue on the main WV News page and the June 1, 2008.

$200,000 school security grant awarded to Logan County 10-25-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/200000-school-security-grant-awarded-to-logan-county
It's becoming an all-too-common occurrence: mass shootings in schools. "When you look at the nation as a whole and the incidents that have been occurring, you don't want to wait for something to happen," said Sheriff Sonya Porter of Logan County. That's why Logan County is taking a proactive approach, securing a nearly $200,000 federal grant from the U.S. Department of Justice…Door barricade devices in case of an active shooter, god forbid; the replacement of all the cameras in all of the schools in Logan County; new DVRs, which lets the cameras be internet-based; and metal detectors…The sheriff's department is looking into silent panic alarms activated by teachers themselves that could not be unarmed by anyone other than law enforcement. Karl’s comment: It sure sounds like a prison.

Local W.Va. official sentenced for stealing money from board of education, fire department 10-18-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/local-wva-official-sentenced-for-stealing-money-from-board-of-education-fire-department
State Auditor John B. McCuskey on Friday announced that 61-year-old Larry Dunbar will serve two to 10 years in jail after pleading guilty to fraud and embezzlement. Dunbar was the transportation director of the Monroe County Board of Education and was the chief of the Union Volunteer Fire Department. Karl’s comment: One of the Ten Commandments says, “Thou shalt not steal.” Oops, the Ten Commandments are banned from public schools.

Kanawha says its mean SAT score is above WV's average. But the county's score has still dropped. 10-17-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/kanawha-says-its-mean-sat-score-is-above-wv-s/article_5cb71e23-f241-57a9-8b1f-c10cdd643a39.html
Kanawha County 11th graders in public schools averaged a 961 on the SAT when they took it during a school day last school year, according to a county school system official. Counseling and Testing Director Jon Duffy said the average on the SAT School Day Test across West Virginia was 928, and the comparable international average was 973…On the other section, math, they averaged a 476 in the 2017-18 school year and a 467 in the 2018-19 school year. For the past two school years, West Virginia has used the college entrance exam as its standardized test for juniors in public schools. The state pays for the test to be free…Kanawha’s average SAT score drop came despite the percentage of the county’s juniors deemed at least proficient in math staying roughly the same, at 29 percent, and despite the percentage deemed at least proficient in reading and writing growing from 55 percent to 60 percent…To earn the state’s Promise Scholarship, a student, alongside meeting other requirements, must score at least 520 in math and 530 on evidence-based reading and writing and an 1100 combined, so a student must go above the minimum in either math or the reading and writing section. To get into West Virginia University’s Morgantown campus, in-state high school students must get at least a 990 on both sections combined. Karl’s comment: According to the Princeton Review (https://www.princetonreview.com/college-advice/good-sat-scores), “A perfect SAT score is 1600. The minimum score is 400. And the average for the class of 2018 was 1068.” Many years in these West Virginia School News pages I have provided proof of the pitiful academic performance of West Virginia students. Throughout those years the state has poured more money down the public school rat hole. Teachers had a strike and nothing will change unless scores go lower, OR school officials find a way to cheat.

Students able to retake sections of ACT next year 10-9-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/u-s-world/students-able-to-retake-sections-of-act-next-year/
Students unhappy with their ACT scores will soon be able to retake portions of the exam to help achieve their goals. The ACT is one of the two most important exams students take to get into college. Never in its 60-year history has this been an option…Students are still required to take the full exam before being able to retake individual portions, which will only be offered online. Jamie has been prepping college-bound students for 20 years and said this is great but challenging for some students in certain regions of the state. Karl’s comment: How would this look if it was a football game? A team that failed to get a field goal (or whatever) could have a do over.

Half of West Virginia teachers miss 10 days or more each school year 10-10-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/10/10/half-of-west-virginia-teachers-miss-10-days-or-more-each-school-year/
More than half of West Virginia teachers missed more than 10 days of school last year, according to research by the state Department of Education. Across the state, 52.75 percent of teachers missed more than 10 days, according to the research. The prior year’s number was 52.46. The year before that it was 51.44. And in 2016 it was 50.83. “The impact is that kids need to be in their classrooms and teachers need to be teaching in those classrooms for student achievement rates to go up,” state Superintendent Steve Paine… Karl’s comment: Stress? Laziness? Generous sick-leave policy? Yes, to all.

Threats under investigation at two Charleston schools 1-9-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Threat-made-toward-middle-school-in-Charleston-562582041.html
According to a release from the Charleston Police Department, there were threats made on social media sites regarding Stonewall Jackson Middle School and Capital High School. Neither threat seems credible to police, but there will be additional enforcement at both schools as a precaution. Karl’s comment: What a mess!

West Virginia schools honored for Balanced Scorecard achievement 10-7-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/west-virginia-schools-honored-for-balanced-scorecard-achievement/
Kenna was the only school in the state to exceed standards in all five areas of the Balanced Scorecard. Evans Elementary exceeded standards in four areas. Karl’s comment: LOL. Only one school met the state’s own standards. PATHETIC.

Parents file lawsuit against Board of Education, others following alleged rape of their son 10-4-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/parents-file-lawsuit-against-board-of-education-others-following-alleged-rape-of-their-son/
The parents of a Morgantown High School student have filed a civil lawsuit on his behalf against the Monongalia County Board of Education, a teacher, the Morgantown Theatre Company, its executive director and the parents of a fellow student. The suit alleges that the boy, who is homosexual, was assaulted, raped and bullied by the fellow student…Several months later, the boy told a teacher at Morgantown High about the rape and about several instances of assault and of the fellow student “outing” his homosexuality, according to the suit. The lawsuit claims that the teacher did not report the allegations, as required by West Virginia state code. Nearly a year after confiding in the teacher, the boy told his mother about the rape. On that same day, the teacher sent the boy’s mother a text message explaining that she did not report it because she did not want to betray the boy’s trust, the lawsuit states. The suit alleges that the teacher had a friendship with the parents of the assailant and that the relationship was a factor in not reporting it. The mother then reported the assaults, rape and the lack of reporting by the teacher to the Monongalia County Board of Education. The lawsuit alleges that the board failed to take “any meaningful action.” Since the alleged incidents, the boy has been affected by seizures and has been hospitalized because of “suicidal ideations and intents.” Karl’s comment: Another sad situation.

WV KIDS COUNT sees mixed results on state of West Virginia children 10-1-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/10/01/wv-kids-count-sees-mixed-results-on-state-of-west-virginia-children/
“We are seeing increases in the rate of kids who are graduating from high school, we are seeing increases in the rate of children who are graduating high school on time,” Dr. Lindsay Allen, a Data Analyst for the organization with WVU School of Public Health said. “On the flip side, we aren’t seeing the math and reading proficiency as we’d like to on the 8th-grade levels.” Allen said just a quarter of eight grade students in the state are proficient in reading and math, according to their data presented by her and Dr. Tammy Collins of Marshall University. Those numbers are better than the findings in the recent annual Balanced Scorecard released by the state school system. The data released September 12 showed 86 percent of West Virginia high schools don’t meet the standard for math. According to the Balanced Scorecard, 14 percent of high schools do not meet the standard, 78 percent of high schools partially meet the standard and 9 percent meet the standard. Karl’s comment: What a sham! The speakers should have plainly stated that the academic performance of public schools in West Virginia is terrible.

B-UMS put on lockdown 10—1-19
http://www.theintermountain.com/news/local-news/2019/10/b-ums-put-on-lockdown/
Threats left on a Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School administrator’s voicemail were deemed not credible early Monday but the school remained on a precautionary lockdown for the duration of the school day. Close to 500 students were picked up at the school by parents and guardians after Upshur County Schools decided the students’ absence would be excused, according to Dr. Sara Stankus, superintendent, late Monday afternoon. Several voicemails were left on principal Michael Lynch’s phone and appeared to be made as a prank from students, according to Stankus. “They called several times and disguised their voices,”  she said. The superintendent said the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department, which is investigating the incident, advised her to not release what type of threats were left in the voicemails. Karl’s comment: Maybe a joke, but definitely a mess.

Officer: Threats reported at South Charleston High School deemed not credible 9-27-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/officer-threats-reported-at-south-charleston-high-school-deemed-not-credible
Officials at South Charleston High School say they have found no credibility in threats reported at the school. Lt. Stan Miller, the school resource officer, said authorities have reviewed cameras and have tried to narrow down possible suspects this week after reports of a threat written on a school wall. Miller said authorities are investigating a second reported threat that was verbalized, but said neither of the reported threats are credible. Miller said protocol has been followed by the school Karl’s comment: Just think of the trauma inflicted upon the students even with a threat that was “not credible.”

Juvenile petitions, suspensions likely after fight at Capital High School 9-26-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/juvenile-petitions-suspensions-likely-after-fight-at-capital-high-school
Juvenile petitions charging at least two students are expected after a fight at Capital High School Thursday involving a group of students. The incident broke out about 8:20 a.m. in the breakfast commons area, Charleston Police Department Cpl. Travis Hill, the school’s prevention resource officer, said… A video circulating on social media shows a fight with punches exchanged and one man who appears to be a school employee falling to the floor. One student jumped on top of a vending machine while students screamed and fought below…Hill said the fight lasted about five minutes. Hill, Charleston Police Department Patrolman Travis Bailes, who was teaching a law enforcement class, and school administrators were able to stop the altercation. Karl’s comment: Just another day on the cellblock.

Threat found at Cabell school was copy from years ago, not credible, spokesman says 9-25-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/threat-found-at-cabell-school-was-copy-from-years-ago-not-credible-spokesman-says
A threat found at a Cabell County elementary school turned out to be a copy of a threat from years ago and was not credible, a school system spokesman said. The threat was found Wednesday morning at Hite Saunders Elementary School in Huntington…F lowers said school will continue Wednesday, and a school resource officer will remain there all day to ease worries. Students who stayed home or left will be excused. Karl’s comment: So it was bogus, multiple others (see below and other WV School News pages) were real. An armed officer was assigned to the school and some kids left. So much for the joy of learning.

Students chat with lawmakers through video conference about climate change 9-24-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/local/students-chat-with-lawmakers-through-video-conference-about-climate-change/
Climate change is a weighty topic but on Tuesday, September 24, 2019, students from across West Virginia talked to lawmakers about the issue and the impact in the Mountain State. Students from elementary through high school asked questions through an hour-long video conference… “I think kids understand this issue and are concerned about it at all levels,” Del. Hansen said. “We’ve seen that at the international level and how kids have gone to the United Nations and spoken to world leaders. I think kids across West Virginia are also concerned.” Karl’s comment: Climate change is mostly driven by New Age Mother Earth worship. Like facts about evolutionism, the truth will be censored by government schools.

Two Richwood High School students suspended, charged for allegedly making threats 9-23-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/two-richwood-high-school-students-suspended-charged-for-allegedly-making-threats
The sheriff’s office said two different threats were made at the high school last week. School officials did not say what the threats consisted of, but reassured the community the two students would not be in school Monday…A school resource office will be at Richwood High School Monday as his regular assigned duty. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

Threat to Andrew Jackson Middle School investigated 9-22-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Threat-to-Andrew-Jackson-Middle-School-investigated-561076581.html
A threat to a middle school in Kanawha County over the weekend will prompt extra security at the school Monday. A spokesperson for Kanawha County Schools tells WSAZ they were made aware of a threat on social media Saturday night involving Andrew Jackson Middle School…Classes will go on as usual Monday, but there will be an increased police presence as a precaution. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

Viral video from Fayette County high school prompts investigation by deputies 9-18-19
Fayette County Deputies are investigating after a video of a student allegedly beating up another student goes viral. The video was reportedly taken at Oak Hill High School. It was circulating social media on Tuesday, September 17, 2019.
Karl’s comment: It looks like cellblock activity in a jail.

Students face charges for threats at high school in Raleigh County 9-18-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/students-face-charges-for-threats-at-high-school-in-raleigh-county/
A pair of young people are facing charges after threats were made at Independence High School. The threats were made for Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2019 at 10 a.m. According to investigators with the Raleigh County Sheriff’s Office, the threat was made on a hand written note that was left in the boys restroom. School resource officers Cpl. Pack and Sgt. Kade arrested two students.  
Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

Police: Student arrested after threatening note found at high school 9-18-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/police-student-arrested-after-threatening-note-found-at-high-school/
An arrest is made related to a threatening note found at Woodrow Wilson High School. Officers with the Beckley Police Department arrested 18-year-old Madison Ewing, who is a student at Woodrow Wilson High School. Ewing is charged with terroristic threats. Local authorities were alerted of a threatening note found at Woodrow Wilson High School in Beckley. The note indicates that seven people are planning a shooting at the high school at 9 a.m. on September 18, 2019.
Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

14-year-old arrested for social media threat to shoot up school 9-16-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/14-year-old-arrested-for-social-media-threat-to-shoot-up-school/
A high school student was arrested after making a Snapchat post threatening to shoot up a Berkeley County school on Monday. Investigators say the unidentified 14-year-old boy made posts on Snapchat to shoot up the unnamed school on Sunday, one in which he waved a firearm around to another student, who then alerted her parents. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

Testing results show minimal progress in reading, math by WV students 9-12-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/testing-results-show-minimal-progress-in-reading-math-by-wv/article_6442c51c-c8f1-5d13-b99f-0db07971bd29.html
(1) The percentage of West Virginia public school students scoring at least "proficient" in reading and math only marginally increased last school year from the year before, while science proficiency dropped, according to statewide standardized test data released by the state Department of Education on Thursday. (2) For the 2018-19 school year, about 46 percent of students scored at least proficient in reading, while 39 percent did so in math and 33 percent in science. The prior school year, 2017-18, 45 percent of students scored at least proficient in reading, while 38 percent did so in math and 37 percent in science (3) "There's more good news in terms of where districts were and how they're improving than there is bad news," ( State schools Superintendent Steve )Paine said on that radio program. After mentioning math scores, he said the state this year is maybe a 2-8 football team rather than an 0-10 one.

(4) Again last school year, high school juniors had the lowest math proficiency rate of any tested grade level. Only one-fourth were proficient. The minimal math improvements on a state level came despite the education department's math4life campaign, which Paine announced last year. It's planned to last five years.

Regarding test scores, Whisman said educators and assessment experts compared test questions to the state’s academic standards to determine what minimum score constituted proficiency. He said the state ultimately decides what scores count as proficient based on that. (5) The state school board and state Legislature have changed West Virginia’s tested grade levels and subjects, and the actual tests used, several times over the past five years, limiting comparability over that time.

But last school year and the previous one, the state kept things the same: American Institutes for Research tests for reading and math in grades three through eight and in science just in grades five and eight, and the SAT college entrance exam in the subjects of reading, math and science for high school juniors…

The SAT has an evidence-based reading and writing section and a math section. Students can score between 200-800 on each.

A 470 on the evidence-based reading and writing section is the minimum to be considered proficient in West Virginia, while 520 is the proficiency cutoff score in math. The department didn't provide average SAT scores on the 200-800 scale for the subjects — it just gave the percentages of students deemed proficient or not…

(6) In Kanawha County last school year, 48 percent of students in all tested grades scored at least proficient in reading, while 43 percent did so in math and 35 percent in science. The prior school year in Kanawha, 47 percent of students scored at least proficient in reading, while 42 percent did so in math and 39 percent in science.

To see the test scores by subject and grade level, and on the state, county and school levels, visit  https://zoomwv.k12.wv.us/Dashboard and click on the “state assessment results” tab or circle.

To see the "balanced scorecards," visit mywvschool.org, where you can get more specifics for counties and schools by choosing a county [they’re called districts] and clicking “download data set” under the bar that labels what the colors mean.

Karl’s comment: I put the points in bold blue to reference here. (1) This is the first time I have seen a report that qualifies the data by inserting “marginally.” Even then, the reader may just notice that the scores “increased” and not notice that it is only increasing from terrible to a little less (marginally) terrible. (2) 46%, 39%, and 33% are terrible scores. As I have said many times, a normal parent would not be happy with those percentages if they were test scores! (3) BWAHAH! Coaches get fired for those results. The public school “teams” should be disbanded. (4) The longer kids are there, the worse they get in math. (5) Exactly! They have conned and confused citizens for many years. (6) Kanawha County is supposed to be the showcase of West Virginia. It is the county that still smears the Courageous Corps of 74.

Annual report: 38 percent of W.Va. schools are missing mark on student attendance 9-12-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/09/12/annual-report-38-percent-of-w-va-schools-are-missing-mark-on-student-attendance/
West Virginia’s schools have a major problem with absenteeism. More than 38 percent of schools in West Virginia did not meet a standard for student attendance, according to the annual  Balanced Scorecard that was released Thursday. That means the schools had at least 20 percent of their student population with chronic absences. That, in turn, was calculated as students missing at least 10 percent of the time they were enrolled… Any way you describe the problem, said state schools Superintendent Steve Paine, West Virginia schools are missing the mark. “We have more schools this year than last year, who have students who missed 18 or more days of school. That’s unfathomable. It’s not acceptable, and I’m really upset about it,” Paine said. The percentage of schools considered to have chronically absent students in 2017-18 was 30.5 percent…At the elementary level, 16 percent of students are reported as chronically absent. At middle school, it’s 20 percent. By high school, 24 percent. Karl’s comment: It is not a simple subject, but still displays what mess West Virginia schools are in.

Teen accused of threatening shooting at Logan County school 9-11-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/teen-accused-of-threatening-shooting-at-logan-county-school
A West Virginia teen is accused of researching armor-piercing ammunition, firearms and police response times to school shootings and then threatening his school…It says McCoy threatened a Sept. 3 "incident" at the school when another student criticized what McCoy was doing on the school computer. It says a teacher overheard some of the conversation and reported it to the assistant principal, who then notified authorities. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

Construction of teacher apartments starts in McDowell County 9-9-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/construction-of-teacher-apartments-starts-in-mcdowell-county
A public-private group is hailing the start of construction for apartment-style housing for West Virginia public school teachers  in impoverished McDowell County. Officials for Reconnecting McDowell held a groundbreaking ceremony for the $8 million Renaissance Village housing project Monday in Welch . The partnership is spearheaded by the American Federation of Teachers, which says in a statement that the housing project is the centerpiece of decade-long efforts to revitalize the county's schools and economy. Karl’s comment: Within the article are two links to this 2016 article (red font added): Project under way in McDowell County to build housing complex for teachers 6-10-16
https://wchstv.com/news/local/project-under-way-in-mcdowell-county-to-build-housing-complex-for-teachers
"We realized one of the big issues in McDowell County was recruitment of teachers, and not so much recruitment, but retention," Gayle Manchin (Manchin was a member of the state school board at the time. Manchin is the wife of Democratic Senator Joe Manchin . She is the vice chair of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom USCIRF).
https://www.uscirf.gov/about-uscirf/gayle-manchin-vice-chair ) said. Kelsey Potter is a senior at Mount View High School. She said not having a long-term teacher has been extremely challenging. "My sophomore year I had six English teachers and four of those were substitutes," Potter said… In hopes of changing this trend, the Reconnecting McDowell Project has collected $4 million is grants to build an apartment complex geared toward for teachers. ..Construction crews said demolition should only take few weeks, and they hope to begin construction of the complex in the fall. Karl’s comment: So much for beginning in the fall and using $4 million. That is typical government work. Having the teacher union involved is definitely suspicious. The BIG takeaway is what the student said. Think about it!

West Virginia Poll: Concern about public school performance but distrust of charters 9-9-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/09/09/west-virginia-poll-concern-about-public-school-performance-but-distrust-of-charters/
West Virginia voters favor improving public schools, aren’t fully trusting of charter schools, believe teachers should be paid more and are sympathetic to walkouts by teachers unions. That’s all according to a look at attitudes about education in the latest version of the MetroNews West Virginia Poll… Voters are evenly split on their perception of the quality of education in West Virginia. Asked about satisfaction with the quality of education students receive in kindergarten through grade 12, 50 percent replied that they are satisfied and 50 percent said they are dissatisfied…Additional data in the poll showed that voters with children were more likely to report dissatisfaction with the school system than those with no children. “If you start diving into these demographics, you can really isolate people who are in the system and you see their dissatisfaction is much higher,” Repass said. “Parents recognize reform is necessary.” Still, West Virginians don’t seem to favor upending the public school system. They want to change it… The poll shows 40 percent of West Virginia voters opposing charter schools, 35 percent supporting charter schools and 25 percent with no stated preference. Karl’s comment: This is an example of how the public remains brainwashed and hoodwinked. The BIG takeaway I that people with children in the schools are less brainwashed and hoodwinked—but not enough to rescue their children
.

Nicholas County teacher arrested for carrying gun into school 9-5-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Nicholas-County-teacher-arrested-for-carrying-gun-into-school-559470531.html
The Nicholas County Sheriff's Department arrested a teacher for bringing a handgun onto school property. According to a press release, deputies investigated a complaint of a teacher bringing a pistol onto school property at Cherry River Elementary in Richwood on Aug. 27. Deputies charged Shana Knight, 34, of Richwood, with possession of a deadly weapon on the premises of an educational facility. Karl’s comment: It could be a good thing to have armed staff members, but the law says “no” and this teacher broke the law.

No more excuses for West Virginia public education 9-5-19
Charleston Gazette-Mail, page 4A
Karl’s comment: This op-ed is by Howard M. O’Cull, the executive director of the West Virginia School Board Association. He lists individuals and entities for the state superintendent to use to attain his goal of “when it comes to increasing student achievement, we make no excuses.” Mr. O’Cull questions whether millions of dollars should be spent to deal with the “opioid epidemic effects on public schooling.” He asks, “To what degree are community health agencies, faith-based organizations, and nonprofit agencies capable of providing student counseling and similar services?” I guarantee it will not be Christian groups and it will likely be lots of New Age indoctrination. Of course, Mr. O’Cull wants to “use every means to ensure public school effectiveness.” His last paragraph is just three words: “No more excuses.” I whole-heartedly agree. The Data is in the Details.

Nitro High School students operate professional screen printing shop 8-31-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/nitro-high-school-students-operate-professional-screen-printing-shop
Some Nitro High School students are learning more than the typical curriculum and have designed their own business. Students at Nitro High School are running the Park Avenue Prints screen printing shop. "It's become this big thing where we have machines and opportunities that other schools just don't have the opportunity to do,”…The printing shop was built from the ground up thanks to teacher Erin Petry and her students as part of Gov. Jim Justice’s economic initiative called Simulated Workplace. "We have printing, marketing, and accounting just like it was a company out in the real world,” Petry said…The print shop treats students just like regular employees. They interview for positions, get randomly drug tested and receive performance reviews, all in addition to their regular classroom work… The students make custom designed shirts, banners, plaques, and more. Karl’s comment: I wonder what the local print shop things about this?

Elkins High students explore nature through new program 8-22-19
http://www.theintermountain.com/news/local-news/2019/08/elkins-high-students-explore-nature-through-new-program/
A group of students at Elkins High School were challenged to explore nature and express themselves in a new way during a Wonder and Grow: Mindful Nature Experience this week… According to its mission, Wonder and Grow’s intent is for children to love and appreciate where they live and become stewards of their communities and the planet. Furthermore, according to information provided by their website, Wonder and Grow: Mindful Nature Experience ignites a sense of wonder and grows scientific understanding and connection with the natural world through curiosity driven exploration and mindfulness practices. “We also are using mindfulness as a metaphor for how we want them to behave as readers and writers. The best example of this is the ‘wide view’ activity we did today,” Carroll noted. Kate Reed and Valerie Warner, the “mindful outdoor guides” of Wonder and Grow, guided students through a “mindful nature experience” Tuesday morning through a series of activities including meditation and physical and breathing control exercises… Carroll noted that he and Sacks have incorporated breathing exercises into their classroom lessons in the past and have seen successful outcomes, adding they are hopeful that their students will take what they experienced during the Wonder and Grow lesson and incorporate it into their daily routine. “Last year, Amanda started using breathing exercises and short meditations as ways to start class and as a way to transition between activities,” he said. Karl’s comment: The Wonder and Grow: Mindful Nature Experience website (https://www.wonderandgrow.org/) claims to be scientific (“Connecting the mind to the natural world through scientific understanding and discovery.”), but is pure Mother Earth Gaia religion (“Connecting the heart and spirit to the natural world through yoga and mindfulness practices.”).

They advertise that they are “certified Kripalu Mindful Outdoor Guides, we offer powerful nature-based experiences—combining forest bathing, Ayurveda, meditation, and practical outdoor skills—for people of all ages and backgrounds.” (https://www.wonderandgrow.org/program-info-copy-1)

The Kripalu Center for Yoga and health (https://kripalu.org/content/kripalu-school-mindful-outdoor-leadership) has programs (https://kripalu.org/presenters-programs, accessed 8-23-2019) like (just to name a few) A Buddhist Healing Ritual (consisting ofof music, prayers, and mantras”); Awaken Your Inner Magic: Yoga and the Tarot (You know what Tarot Cards are about.); Creating a Magical Life with the Angels (“Discover how to connect with and free the divine spark within, in order to live with more joy and gratitude… >Establish a personal and poignant relationship with your guardian angels >Begin a dialogue with your guardian angels.); Queer Empowerment Retreat (“This retreat is designed for and open to LGBTQIA+ people of all backgrounds. Aaron—a diversity and inclusion educator and gay trans man who has lived life as every letter of LGBTQ…”); Connect with Your Angels (“>Discover how your angels can help you in all aspects of your life >Discern the difference between true divine guidance and your ego’s interference >Learn how to do an angel reading >Experience a meditation to meet your guardian angel and/or spirit guides); and Reclaiming God: Finding Your Way to a Powerful Spiritual Practice (“This dynamic retreat with meditation master, spiritual teacher, and nondenominational pastor David Harshada Wagner is a journey into the heart of your spiritual longing.) 

A blog entry (https://www.wonderandgrow.org/single-post/2019/03/03/Sanctuary) has this: “The ancient healers protect my journey--they welcome my soft footfall--among the golden treasure of the forest floor. I ask to rest--to be healed--they answer…These gifts are of glory to Yahweh-- who holds each of us--tree being and human in loving kindness.”

See also: Becoming Mindful of Mindfulness and Yoga is Religion

Messages of positivity surround Putnam County at start of school year 8-22-19
https://wchstv.com/community/putnam-news/messages-of-positivity-surround-putnam-county-at-start-of-school-year
More good news at Winfield Middle School where messages of encouragement can now be found on the restroom stalls. Messages of encouragement can be found painted on the restroom stalls throughout the middle school. Principal Matt Shock said it was made possible through a partnership through the Pulse Church. Members came in and painted these messages, reading "believe in yourself," "be-you-tiful" and "always help others." Karl’s comment: Shame on that church! The members should be rescuing children. As a former middle school teacher, I guarantee that the walls will soon have obscenities written on them.

Kanawha County students to receive free breakfast and lunch 8-22-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/local/kanawha-county-students-to-receive-free-breakfast-and-lunch/
Every student in Kanawha County will have their bellies kept full this school year thanks to one federal program helping those in low-income areas… Kanawha County Schools Communications Director, Briana Warner said, “it removes any stigma. So no student will ever be isolated or known to be at that free or reduced level or everyone is exactly the same and everyone is able to get that breakfast and lunch and obviously, we know that means full bellies and better learning because we are able to do that.” All students in the 66 schools of Kanawha County are applicable to receive the program’s benefits and no proof of economic status is required. Karl’s comment: It is liberalism and socialism. I worked for my lunch and was proud to do it. If not, I would have been unashamed to bring a bag lunch. (Cabell County is also doing it https://www.wowktv.com/news/local/cabell-county-public-schools-is-providing-free-lunches-to-students/)

Putnam County unveils new student app 8-22-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/08/22/putnam-county-unveils-new-student-app/
Students in Putnam County are back in school and with their return are being encouraged to download a free app provided by the county school system. It’s called the “Stop It” app and it’s designed to make each school safer and more secure by allowing easier reporting of potential threats and problems…The App is available for download to all devices. It’s also available to all students in Putnam County, including the elementary schools. Each school has a specific code, but that’s the only identity. Beyond knowing the school the student attends the rest of the information is unknown unless a student is willing to divulge. Karl’s comment: It sounds good, but just think of the problems this can cause with more data collection of students as well as students who will stir up trouble because they have an issue with another kid.

No threat to Calhoun Middle-High found 8-19-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/08/19/no-threat-to-calhoun-middle-high-found/
Calhoun Middle-High School will open as normal on Tuesday after officials were notified of a possible threat to students. An investigation showed there was no immediate threat to the students or the community. Students on campus Monday afternoon for after-school activities were sent home after the threat was made. The campus was also closed as a response. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

Wood County Schools: Raw test scores show growth 8-17-19
http://www.newsandsentinel.com/news/local-news/2019/08/wood-county-schools-raw-test-scores-show-growth/
Initial assessment scores show Wood County Schools students improving proficiency in nearly every category, but officials caution the raw scores likely will change by the time final numbers are released next month. Wood County Schools Superintendent Will Hosaflook provided a glimpse of the data during Tuesday’s Wood County Board of Education meeting, saying scores significantly rose between 2018 and 2019…Early numbers for Wood County Schools showed growth in English language arts and mathematics. The only exception was seventh-grade English language arts, which remained flat, Hosaflook said. In some areas, the percentage of students testing at or above proficiency increased by 10 or more percentage points, Hosaflook said. Proficiency in ELA for fourth-grade increased by 10 percentage points, while sixth-grade increased by nine percentage points. In math, both third- and sixth-grades increased by 10 percentage points, and eighth-grade scores jumped 13 percentage points…Hosaflook said he expects Wood County Schools to rank among the top performing counties in West Virginia, and believes as more teachers see these kinds of results, the more they will adopt the programs and best practices being used by their peers. “I would expect even higher test scores next year,”  Hosaflook said.
Karl’s comment: I contacted the reported at merb@newsandsentinel.com when I found this article on 9-1:

Dear Mr. Erb:

Regarding your article at
http://www.newsandsentinel.com/news/local-news/2019/08/wood-county-schools-raw-test-scores-show-growth/

When students are said to have their "proficiency increased by 10 or more percentage points", can you please tell me what the scores actually were.  For example, did scores of 60 increase to 70?

Thank you.

Karl Priest

After not receiving a response, I tried again on 9-6:

Dear Mr. Erb:

In reference to my unanswered email of 9-1, I provide the following and ask for your response.

According to WVDE State Assessment results

https://zoomwv.k12.wv.us/Dashboard/portalHome.jsp proficiencies in reading, math and science were all below 60 with the highest being 5 th grade reading which was 54.

Should parents be proud if their child scored 54% on a test, even though it improved from (for example) 44%?

My point is that Wood County and your article is not providing accurate information to taxpayers.

If I am in error, please show me where.

Thank you.

Karl Priest

Mr. Erb responded the same day:

I apologize not getting back with you earlier. I do not yet have the final numbers for Wood County Schools, they are expected to be released by the state in mid-September.

The numbers you linked to were from last year, 2017-18. You are correct in that 10 percentage points of growth can mean an increase from 20 percent to 30 percent. The percentage, though, does not represent the students scores, rather it is the number of students achieving proficiency or above. The state as a whole tends to have low proficiency rates and everyone is working to improve those.

If you have any other questions, I suggest you talk to administrators at Wood County Schools as they can better walk you through the numbers and how they are achieved.

Appreciate your interest. Keep reading.

Thank You
Michael Erb

I replied on the same day (9-6).

Dear Mr. Erb:

Please let me know when those scores come in.  

Unless I am mistaken, to live up to the claim made to you, the score (in the example I gave) would have to be 64.

Thank you.

Karl Priest

On 9-6, via the Wood County Schools website contact (http://woodcountyschoolswv.com/District/Staff/), I wrote:

Dear Mr. Hosaflook:

According to (http://www.newsandsentinel.com/news/local-news/2019/08/wood-county-schools-raw-test-scores-show-growth/) "In some areas, the percentage of students testing at or above proficiency increased by 10 or more percentage points, Hosaflook said. Proficiency in ELA for fourth-grade increased by 10 percentage points, while sixth-grade increased by nine percentage points."

Please tell me the exact percentage points (for example 94) for each of those grades.

Thank you.

Karl Priest

On 9-13 I emailed the reporter:

Dear Mr. Erb:

Mr. Will Hosaflook did not respond to my query via the County's website.

So, I hope you (as a journalist who wants to report facts to your readers) will get the answer to my question.

Your point that "does not represent the students scores, rather it is the number of students achieving proficiency or above" is not relevant.

The point is that the County is not being forthright in disclosing the poor performance of its students.

Here is the question that needs answered:

When students are said to have their "proficiency increased by 10 or more percentage points", can you please tell me what the scores actually were.  For example, did scores of 60 increase to 70?

Thank you.

Karl

As of 9-21 (the date of this post) Mr. Erb has not responded.

Wood County is deceiving the taxpayers. Sadly, the media is going to be complicit in the deception.

Back to School Means More This Year 8-16-19
Charleston Gazette-Mail page 3D
When I became Senate president three years ago, one of my highest priorities was changing the trajectory of our state's K-12 education system...Education is our state government's biggest financial commitment and its greatest moral responsibility. For too long, we haven't been living up to that responsibility.  Despite per-pupil spending  that ranks in the top half of  U.S. states, our student performance has lagged near the  very bottom...I'm proud to say  we've begun the process of improving education in our state.  Two years of hard work and debate culminated earlier this summer in the passage of a new education bill that we believe will bring positive changes for teachers, parents, and kids...First and foremost, we've enacted the largest teacher pay raise in state history...I'm thrilled that for the first time, some of our communities will have the chance to open public charter schools...
Karl’s comment: This is a well-intentioned attempt by conservatives to fix the public school mess. The conservatives were forced to submit to the teacher unions by giving them a big raise despite the pitiful performance of their students. Charter Schools are Deceptive and should be avoided. See “ THE CLASS OF 2032 6-14-19” below.

As new school year begins, state superintendent offers year in review for last school year 8-14-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/08/14/as-new-school-year-begins-state-superintendent-offers-year-in-review-for-last-school-year/
Student enrollment continues to decline at West Virginia’s public schools, according to information Dr. Steve Paine, the state superintendent of schools, presented to members of the state Board of Education Wednesday…In all, 265,755 students were enrolled in 691 public schools in West Virginia’s 55 counties during the last school year. “We’d like that number to go up. It was 284,000 when I was here the first time,” Paine told the BOE…Ahead of the release of the latest student achievement data soon, Paine said he’s told county superintendents they must adopt a “no excuses” mentality. “We already know more than we need to know to teach all of those students,” Paine said…Going forward, Paine said he would be focused on student performance at a time when public education accounts for 42.5 percent of West Virginia’s general revenues, down from just more than 54 percent in 2000. Karl’s comment: Nothing will change for better despite his “no excuses mentality.” The tax payers are getting ripped off. A lot of the enrollment decline is due to homeschooling—thank God!

Wood County Schools creates online teacher position 8-10-19
http://www.newsandsentinel.com/news/local-news/2019/08/wood-county-schools-creates-online-teacher-position/
Wood County Schools has created a virtual school teacher position and hopes to see an increase in online enrollment...Among the items approved was the creation of a virtual school teacher position to oversee online classes for the school system. Officials said they hope expansion of the online option will bring back students who have left to be homeschooled. Attendance Director Chris Rutherford, who also oversees homeschooling, said he sent out about 700 fliers to homeschool families concerning the new online option. “I am being inundated with phone calls,” Rutherford said. “I think that is going to be a great move forward for us to be able to offer that, and to hopefully get back some of those homeschool students,” said board member Justin Raber. Karl’s comment: Will Christian homeschool leaders and parents $ee what is happening?! The anti-God system gets more tax money and continues to indoctrinate.

Kanawha County Schools excess levy goes into effect 8-8-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Kanawha-County-Schools-excess-levy-passes-499905461.html
The Kanawha County Schools' excess levy has officially been added to taxpayers' bills after it was voted on by property owners in November 2018…So if a home is valued at $100,000, the bill will increase about $83.90. The average increase was around 10.76 percent… "It's a lot of money, but where else are we going to get the money? We just have to step up and do that," said Kanawha County resident, Debbie Perry. Perry says she has grandchildren in Kanawha schools and wants to give them the best education possible. Karl’s comment: See the pie chart above and then listen to the sound of a flush.

Liberals, lawsuits and education July 18, 2019
http://www.theintermountain.com/opinion/columnists/2019/07/liberals-lawsuits-and-education/
Led by conservatives in the West Virginia State Senate, the entire legislature passed The Student Success Act that provides much needed reforms to the state’s public education system...The Student Success Act will help improve outcomes for students all across this state, it gives parents more control over their child’s education, and it gives another pay raise to our hardworking teachers. The Student Success Act also provides more funding for smaller school systems, improves student access to better technology, invests in teaching positions of greatest need like math and science and reading, increases the number of professional health personnel available to our students and much, much more. Importantly, The Student Success Act did not raise a single tax on the great citizens of this state. For decades, our school system has not been providing our students with the world-class education they deserve…

Our students’ test scores ranked last or nearly last in all the important categories. Conservatives deemed this unacceptable and pledged to the citizens that education reform was a top priority to move our state forward. Unfortunately, big union bosses who helped create this education catastrophe, stood in the way of improving student education. Even after the Senate, House of Delegates and Governor passed The Student Success Act into law, these same union bosses are threatening to continue their fight against a better education system…

Meanwhile, this will cost the taxpayers of West Virginia thousands upon thousands of dollars. But this is what liberal extremists and union bosses do. They shut down government, close the doors of our schools on our children, and clog our courts with junk lawsuits. They will do everything they can to force their liberal ideals down the throats of taxpayers. They accept having our children rank last in the nation in education so long as they get to keep their cushy jobs and powerful positions…

The days of a failing education system being controlled by liberals and union bosses in Charleston are over.
Karl’s comment: He is right about liberals, but conservatives will not solve the problem. The problem is government education (read “indoctrination).

West Virginia teacher charged with soliciting a minor 7-16-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/west-virginia-teacher-charged-with-soliciting-a-minor/
According to Timothy Haught, Wetzel County Prosecuting Attorney, Adam Croasmun, 23 of Paden City, West Virginia, has been charged with soliciting a minor via computer to engage in an illegal act…WTRF, our sister station, spoke to Superintendent of Wetzel County Schools, Edward. (sic) T Toman and he gave us this response. “ I am aware of reports that a recently employed classroom teacher, who has yet to begin his employment term with our school system, has been arrested.Karl’s comment: You can easily follow the thread of school personnel sex perversions throughout the WV School news headlines. Also see the comments on this issue on the main WV News page and the June 1, 2008.

Resource officers being added to each high school in Wayne County 7-11-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Resource-officers-being-added-to-each-high-school-in-Wayne-County-512604421.html
The Wayne County School system has approved adding school resource officers to the high schools in the county… Alexander says the main reason for adding the officers is for student safety. Karl’s comment: If the children were not in danger, the armed officers would not be needed. Those officers might stop some physical attacks, but they will not stop the spiritual attacks in public schools. Please OPEN YOUR EYES.

Greenbrier Schools Go Door to Door for Kids 7-5-19
Charleston Gazette-Mail page 1A
Unlike most states, West Virginia offers free, universal preschool to all 20,000 of its 4-year-olds, as well as to 3-year-olds with special needs. Experts say the effort to offer every child a high-quality preschool spot has taken lots of time and money—almost 20 years, so far, and $98 million in state spending in 2018…Teacher share say parents share insights about their child more freely in the privacy of the home…Preschool teachers visit new students’ families at the beginning and end of the school year…Teacher anecdotes about kids coming to preschool with behaviors not seen previously in the classroom alerted Superintendent Hanna to the havoc one or two struggling kids can wreak. “They get pretty violent,” Hanna said, describing the behavior exhibited by young children suffering from trauma or the effects of being exposed to opiods in utero. “They kick, bite, throw chairs, furniture and blocks...It’s hard to get them out of that mode once they’re in it, but addressing the behavior early is crucial…It also makes it hard for every child in that classroom to learn. But removing troubled preschool students from the classroom is not an option. The state recently prohibited preschool suspension, except as a last resort in extreme situations, and then only temporarily…To keep kids on a track toward academic success, Greenbrier County Schools provides instruction for teachers on…how to teach social emotional regulation….All of this support means teachers here have the tools to actively teach kids how to…calm themselves through mindfulness exercises and yoga… Karl’s comment: Much could be made out of the state’s seeking to indoctrinate 4-year-olds, on the state’s going into homes, on the huge amount of money spent, and the violent classrooms. A big point could be made that the West Virginia Department of Education 2017-18 test data for Greenbrier County (https://zoomwv.k12.wv.us/Dashboard/dashboard/7310) shows the percents of students proficient in math (39), reading (48.24), and science (37.55) are pathetic! But, the MAJOR point is that Yoga is Religion. Also, parents should become mindful of the religious aspects of mindfulness.

Justice signs omnibus education bill, putting bow on pay raises and opening door to charters 6-28-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/06/28/justice-signs-omnibus-education-bill-putting-bow-on-pay-raises-and-opening-door-to-charters/
Gov. Jim Justice has signed an omnibus education bill that opens the way for West Virginia’s first charter schools. The bill includes a variety of proposed changes to the education system, including pay raises, charter schools, increased support personnel for schools, open enrollment, incentives to fill in-demand positions and financial support for small or struggling counties…Both the American Federation of Teachers-West Virginia and the West Virginia Education Association sent letters to Justice, asking him to veto the bill. Karl’s comment: Regarding Charter schools, see my 6-18 comment. Regarding teacher pay raises, see the terrible academic results recorded on these WV School News pages. An article published the same day revealed that the teacher unions were still bullying the elected officials: “Gov. Jim Justice apparently planned and then canceled ceremonial bill signing events that had been set for Monday in several areas of the state. Groups that oppose an omnibus education bill that opens the way for charter schools were preparing to protest the events.
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/06/28/governor-plans-and-then-cancels-barnstorming-bill-signings-as-protestors-geared-up/

Kanawha County School Excess Levy increases to show up on July 1st tax bill 6-27-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Kanawha-County-School-Excess-Levy-increases-to-show-up-on-July-1st-tax-bill-511911851.html
Kanawha County taxpayers will see noticeable increases on their upcoming real and personal property tax bills starting in July. According to a press release from Kanawha County Commission, the passage of the 2018 Kanawha County Schools Board of Education Excess Levy caused this rate increase… 55,000 Kanawha County residents, out of 121,228 registered voters, chose to cast their ballot regarding the levy and 35,914 of them were for it. That’s only 45% of our registered voters that were at the polls. Karl’s comment:Pitiful! 2019 The Kid’s Count WV Data Book (https://wvkidscount.org/wv-data-book/), using state school system WESTEST results ranks Kanawha County (out of 55 counties, 1 st is best) 33 rd in 4th graders not proficient in reading, 30 th in 8th graders not proficient in math, and 52 nd in HS students not graduating on time!

THE CLASS OF 2032 6-14-19


Karl’s comment: This nearly full page ad (“Class of 2032”) appeared in the Charleston Gazette-Mail (pg. 3A) on June 14, 2019 and was paid for by the Chamber of Commerce. It accurately portrays the pitiful performance of WV public schools. The numbers (with citations at the bottom) convey the facts of where WV students rank: 49th in SAT Scores, 48th in Chance for Success, 46th in 8th Grade Math, and 45th in 8th Grade reading. The last item is 18th in School Finance. Unfortunately, the “Student Success Act” will not solve the problem because of the reasons listed in my comments to the 6-18 entry below.

Herbert Hoover students reflect on portable life; look forward to new school for others 6-20-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/hoover-students-reflect-on-portable-life-look-forward-to-new-school-for-others
Sunday marks three years since the 2016 floods destroyed two Kanawha County schools. Ground has yet to be broken on the new Clendenin Elementary or Herbert Hoover High School. Karl’s comment: Attending school in portables is perfect proof that pupils do not need multi-thousand dollar facilities.

Private school tuition bill still allows religious, anti-LGBT discrimination 6-18-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/private-school-tuition-bill-still-allows-religious-anti-lgbt-discrimination/article_e2614147-5744-5c2f-98a4-cbf41283e988.html
The West Virginia House of Delegates has sidelined the state Senate’s vouchers bill (Senate Bill 1040) while pushing an alternative. A commonality between them: they both would provide money for kids to attend private schools, and they both would allow those schools to discriminate against students for being gay or for their religion, including by excluding those students…T he bill says private schools, in order to qualify to receive scholarship money, must be accredited by the state Board of Education and have “a stated policy against discrimination in admissions on the basis of race, color, national origin or disability.”

Sexual orientation, sex, gender, gender identity and religion are left out. Billy Wolfe, communications specialist for Fairness West Virginia, an LGBT rights group, said it’s ironic that it’s called the “Equal Opportunity Education Scholarship Act.” “Fairness opposes discrimination, and especially when tax credits are used to enable it,” Wolfe said. Delegate Larry Rowe, D-Kanawha, said he plans to amend in broader anti-discrimination protections…

Rowe said the current language would mean people could “get a tax credit for donating to a scholarship-providing organization that gives money to a school that will not allow Jewish children to attend — or Muslim kids, or non-Christian kids, or any [other] religion they choose.” Rowe said the bill is a replacement for education savings accounts, the vouchers the Senate bill would’ve created. “It’s to replace ESAs,” Rowe said, “because ESAs are where the state writes a check to a parent. What’s the difference?”…

Sen. Rollan Roberts, R-Raleigh, leads a school, Victory Baptist Academy, that he said doesn’t accept students who aren’t from Christian families. Its handbook says you can be expelled for being gay.

The application to Grace Christian School, in Huntington, requires parents and students to sign something that says “I understand” the following: “We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to only occur between a man and a woman who are married to each other. God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. Therefore, any form of sexual immorality, such as adultery, fornication, homosexual conduct, bisexual conduct, any use of pornography, or any attempt to change one’s sex, is against the design of God and is therefore sin.” West Virginia’s public schools are banned from discriminating against gay students, though they’re currently allowed to deny transgender students the right to use bathrooms that match their gender identity…

Speaking to the committee in favor of the bill was Scott Jensen, senior government affairs adviser for the Washington, D.C.-based American Federation for Children. It’s a pro-school-voucher organization that Betsy DeVos was chairwoman of before stepping down to become the U.S. education secretary.
Karl’s comment: This is a perfect example of why government needs to get out of education. Vouchers are not the solution. Charter schools are not either. The same goes for Education Savings Accounts. Those things are (as someone else said) “the same dog on a longer leash.” For more on “School Choice” (including ideas for truly needy Christians to be able to afford rescue their children) see Money/Financial Issues.

School board OKs $9M for turf at football fields
Charleston Gazette-Mail page 7A 6-14-19
The Kanawha County Board of Education agreed to spend almost $9 million to install turf at seven high school football fields in the county. Karl’s comment: Cha-ching! Can you think of an appropriate phrase for wasting money?

Franklin Elementary School yoga program to be showcased at conference 6-13-19
http://www.newsandsentinel.com/news/local-news/2019/06/franklin-elementary-school-yoga-program-to-be-showcased-at-conference/
A Franklin Elementary School program on yoga and mindfulness will be highlighted June 19 at the West Virginia Association of School Administrators Conference at Glade Springs… Franklin Elementary partnered with Mindful West Virginia, a program of yoga projects for schools and organizations across the state, after brainstorming about what they could do to reduce levels of chaotic behavior and behavioral issues… This past school year, teachers took 15 minutes every morning to do various yoga and meditative calming exercises with their students before starting their classwork…“If they start this program when they are in Pre-K, they will walk away with a tool to self-regulate themselves and their reactions… Karl’s comment: YOGA IS RELIGION!!!

Sheriff: Two middle school students in Roane County in custody after social media threat 6-3-19
https://wchstv.com//news/local/two-middle-school-students-in-roane-county-in-custody-after-social-media-threat
Two Spencer Middle School students have been taken into custody after a social media threat. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

WV teachers persistent yet frustrated as education special session begins 6-2-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/wv-teachers-persistent-yet-frustrated-as-education-special-session-begins/article_ee2f3df5-1bfc-514f-9e72-4671fb1cbbab.html
“We’re here again, and I’m sure not for the last time. We’ve been here over and over and over, and still, it’s like [legislators’] ears are closed to what we’re saying,” said Tiffany Hersman, a counselor at Point Pleasant Junior-Senior High School, in Mason County. “I don’t know when they’ll realize we’re not giving up. This is too important of a fight. But until they do, we’ll be here.”… Perhaps most notably, the original draft of the Student Success Act proposed allowing an unlimited amount of charter schools in the state, and included an anti-strike measure that would stop teachers from being paid during work stoppages — two of some of the most contentious points that arose during regular session. Karl’s comment: The school system continues to fail, teachers constantly flail, money keeps on flowing, and (sadly) Christians follow the piper.

Parkersburg principal: I accidentally plagiarized Ashton Kutcher speech 5-31-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/parkersburg-principal-i-accidentally-plagiarized-ashton-kutcher-speech
A West Virginia princi
pal accused of plagiarizing Ashton Kutcher in an address to his school's graduating class says he didn't mean to use someone else's work. The News and Sentinel reports Parkersburg High School Principal Kenny DeMoss issued a statement Wednesday saying he should have cited his sources in the May 23 speech, but asserted the "thoughts and ideas" were his own. A graduate posted a video to Facebook that spliced DeMoss' speech with Kutcher's 2013 Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards speech and has since amassed over 100,000 views. The speeches used similar wording and at times featured identical phrasing. Karl’s comment: Karl’s comment: He was “suspended without pay for five days.”
https://wchstv.com/news/local/principal-accused-of-copying-ashton-kutcher-speech-is-suspended

Girl injured in bullying incident on school bus settles with Kanawha County Schools 5-31-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/cops_and_courts/girl-injured-in-bullying-incident-on-school-bus-settles-with/article_9343c6d9-18bc-5fdd-9820-c098fbe1b98c.html
A Kanawha County student received a settlement of about $27,500 from the Kanawha County Board of Education Friday in Kanawha Circuit Court after a bullying incident on a school bus left her with broken teeth. In November 2017, the student was on her way to Ruthlawn Elementary, in Charleston, to participate in the Third Base after-school program. Karl’s comment: See the 5-29 comment.

Barboursville Middle School students to face disciplinary action after threats 5-29-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/barboursville-middle-school-students-to-face-disciplinary-action-after-threats
A Cabell County school system spokesman said appropriate disciplinary action is being taken after two students at Barboursville Middle School made threats against other students. The students were tracked down after the reported threats. Karl’s comment: Another day in Thug Land.

Ripley High School employee suspended after sexual abuse complaint 5-21-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/ripley-high-school-employee-suspended-after-sexual-abuse-complaint
Ripley High School employee has been suspended after West Virginia State Police received a sexual abuse complaint against him. Michael Bright is currently suspended from employment with the school, Captain S.R. Oglesby told Eyewitness News. State Police received a sexual abuse complaint against Bright that involved a female student at Ripley High School. Karl’s comment: You can easily follow the thread of school personnel sex perversions throughout the WV School news headlines. Also see the comments on this issue on the main  WV News  page and the  June 1, 2008.

Judge denies reduced sentences in sexual assault case 5-21-19
Charleston Gazette-Mail Page 2A
For several years Sparks was a basketball coach for St. Albans youth leagues, and he was a member of St. Albans High School’s Local School Improvement Council in 200 and 2001, at one point serving as its vice president. Karl’s comment: Although he was not an employee, it is obvious he was closely connected to St. Albans High School. Here is a 2015 report:
Police say two men, who are now adults, gave statements saying Sparks abused them when they were in their early teens. According to police, the men detailed accusations of sexual acts, as well as intimidation, including threats from Sparks to kill one the victims. Investigators say the men claimed nude photos were also texted to Sparks. The men also told police that Sparks allegedly gave them alcohol, cigarettes, pills and marijuana.
https://www.wsaz.com/home/headlines/Former-Youth-Coach-Charged-in-Sexual-Assault-Case-331349482.html

Chamber report on education says state needs to find way to improve outcomes 5-19-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/05/19/chamber-report-on-education-says-state-needs-to-find-way-to-improve-outcomes/
The chamber has recently released the results of  “The State of Public Education in West Virginia”  report that is based on factual information from reputable sources such as the National Assessment for Education Progress (NAEP), U.S. News & World Report, and ACT and SAT results. Brian Dayton of the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce…said the consensus of the report is that the state has to find a way to improve education outcome…“We have to improve education outcomes in the state of West Virginia.”

Abstract results of the findings include West Virginia ranks 49th in the country in SAT scores and NAEP scores such as 46th in 8th-grade math, 45th in 8th-grade reading, 39th in 4th-grade math, and 36th in 4th-grade reading…88-percent of high schools in the state do not meet the state’s standard for math. Similar numbers in the report show that 90-percent of state high schools do not meet or only partially meet the state’s standards for reading.

Another notable figure is the National Education Association said that the 55 counties in the state spent roughly $3.1 billion on education in 2018 which is equal to over $12,600 per student in one year…

Also included in the report is a separate survey conducted by members in the Chamber of Commerce.

Karl’s comment: I have been pointing this issue out for over ten years. The Chamber of Commerce verifies my points, but stupidly ignores the fact that business are not run like public schools.

From the report (https://www.wvchamber.com/Resources/Docs/Publications/The-State-of-Public-Education-in-WV-2019.pdf) :

Pg 5

A 2019 survey of West Virginia Chamber member companies indicated that nearly half (48%) of the Chamber members surveyed considered the outcomes of West Virginia’s public education system as being either “poor” or “very poor”. Only seventeen percent (17%) of Chamber members surveyed rated the state’s educational performance as “good” or “excellent”. Yet despite these lackluster performance evaluations, this same survey also showed that Chamber members view education taxes and spending as an “investment” in our children’s future.

From page 1:

Where does all the public education money go? 5-19-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/05/15/where-does-all-the-public-education-money-go/
According to figures from the State Department of Education, the total combined budgeted amount for fiscal year 2020 from the state’s General Revenue Fund and two lottery funds will add up to nearly $2.1 billion ($2,084,682,256). But that’s only part of the spending. The state annually receives approximately $360 million in federal tax dollars and another $50 million from various special revenue funds. Add in the county local share of property taxes and excess levies and West Virginia will spend somewhere between $3.3 and $3.5 billion on public education in FY 2020…West Virginia’s cost per student is very high. Figures released last month by the National Education Association show West Virginia spent $12,880 per student in the 2018-2019 school year. That’s a higher per student cost than thirty other states including Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio and North Carolina. So, where does all the money go? Teacher salaries constitute the biggest single expense. State Department of Education figures show West Virginia will spend $901 million in FY 2020 paying school teachers. Service workers’ salaries add up to $305 million. Karl’s comment: $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Listen to the teachers 5-18-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/opinion/op_ed_commentaries/sonya-ashby-listen-to-the-teachers/article_0be4fa14-72ef-5cc4-be17-190ae14da42e.html
I have been employed as an educator for 18 years. And in that time I have done the following…>Put out a fire in a classroom trash can. >Disarmed a 5-year-old who had a switchblade to another student’s throat. >Physically broken up over 30 fist fights. Karl’s comment: The teacher made an unintended disclosure. The three items were together in the midst of a list of the teacher’s credentials and all the good things she has done. The theme of the article was to oppose charter schools and complain that teacher voices have not been heard by legislators. Putting aside that some teachers work hard and sacrifice, let’s look at those three items. She must teach kindergarten, or maybe first grade. A fire in the class trash can! A switchblade at a child’s throat! OVER 30 fistfights! Whatever grade level, that is an ALARMING report. She is not unique. Similar alarming incidents occur in every school! I know, I was a public school teacher for 34 years. Parents must understand that sending their children to a public school is DANGEROUS!

West Virginia Teachers' Unions call for canceling of special session on education 5-15-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/west-virginia-teacher-unions-call-for-canceling-of-special-session-on-education/2003570595
Three West Virginia teacher and school personal unions are calling for the cancellation of the special session on education. The unions say that because charter schools and education savings accounts may be resurrected during the special session Governor Jim Justice as well as lawmakers should cancel the session.  Karl’s comment: The bullies are afraid of any hint of educational freedom for Americans.

Kanawha County Schools announces Summer Food Service Program 5-13-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/kanawha-county-schools-announces-summer-food-service-program
Kanawha County Schools announced its sponsorship of the 2019 federally funded Summer Food Service Program. Breakfast and lunch are open to all children, ages 18 years and under, who would like to participate. No enrollment is necessary. Students can simply show up at a meal site. Karl’s Comment: Like the honey covered poison, it looks good. The fact is that it is more government control of children. (Not to mention 18-year olds getting a free meal!)

Upcoming special session aims to make WV schools superb 5-9-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/opinion/op_ed_commentaries/mitch-carmichael-upcoming-special-session-aims-to-make-wv-schools/article_13259205-1a8c-5abd-bead-dcce8cc464fb.html
The success of West Virginia students and the improvement of our public education system is the primary objective of the upcoming special session of the Legislature. This purpose is vital and necessary to the future of West Virginia and, most importantly, to our children. As with any endeavor, the first step is to determine if action is necessary to correct or improve a current condition. On this question, the evidence is unmistakable and cries out for West Virginia to take immediate action. The data provided by the U.S. Department of Education’s National Assessment of Educational Progress is convincing. Compared to students in other states, West Virginia ranks nearly last. Our state struggles to provide students with an education that is equal to their peers throughout America…

In math, West Virginia’s fourth-grade students rank 34th in the nation. By the eighth grade, they have slipped to 44th. In reading, West Virginia’s fourth-grade students rank 35th in the nation. By the eighth grade, they drop to 45th. Of the states that measure grade-12 performance and for which data is available, West Virginia students score nearly last in math and reading. The objective data is clear and convincing. West Virginia must take decisive action to improve student performance and catch up with the rest of America…

The task before us is noble. It is our moral responsibility to provide a world-class education to our children. To do less is to leave our children at a competitive disadvantage and lessen their opportunities in life. I am confident that the West Virginia public education system can be the best in the nation. I am excited and optimistic to begin the journey that will enable our students to realize their amazing potential.
Karl’s Comment: Like I have done for many years, State Senate President Mitch Carmichael is pointing out the dismal failure of government schools.  Too bad he thinks the schools can be fixed.

Wrestler accused of sex abuse offered plea deal 5-7-19
https://www.herald-dispatch.com/news/wrestler-accused-of-sex-abuse-offered-plea-deal/article_ff96c438-f49f-5e0f-940a-96692daee6ad.html
The indictment filed Jan. 31 states Lanham intentionally forced sexual contact with a 17-year-old female victim without her consent by touching her genitals through her clothing on Nov. 9 while in the 1300 block of 12th Street in Huntington. Lanham, a senior, is a two-time state wrestling champion. Karl’s comment: This was off campus, but….

West Virginia education reform study released 5-7-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/wv-education-reform-study-released/1986849586
The State Department of Education held eight public forums across the state this spring. The goal was to get input from teachers, parents, students, and others. The report card now lists the top-three priorities as raising teacher and staff pay; providing more counselors and mental health for students; and, giving schools more flexibility in the classroom. "Absulutely and proud to make those judgments because we are the education experts in this state. We know what will improve education.  And so we took the ideas that came to us from the forums and from the surveys," said Dr. Steve Paine, WV Superintendent of Schools. Karl’s comment: The system stinks and this “report card” is a total skunk. It is so obviously union manipulated that it should be tossed in the garbage. If you can get past the gag reflex of ready Dr. Paine’s blatant statement of telling parents they are too stupid to know how to educate their children here is what it says: (1) Pay teachers even more for doing a lousy job. (2) Allow more government meddling in private lives of students, many of whom have mental health issues due to liberalism. (3) Allow teachers more opportunities to pervert the values of their students.

Kanawha OKs iPads for all fourth-graders, proposes 2020-21 calendar early 5-7-19
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/kanawha-oks-ipads-for-all-fourth-graders-proposes--/article_00f67b15-111d-5363-94b4-89ab001fca69.html
The Kanawha County Board of Education unanimously approved Monday paying about $700,000 to provide tablet computers to every fourth-grader, meaning there will now be an Apple computer for every public school student through 12th grade…Regarding the iPads, technology director Leah Sparks said the school system will now pay $177,000 for the next four years, at which point it will have the choice to own the 1,850 computers or trade them in and get a new rental agreement… She said that, like fifth-graders, fourth-graders won’t be able to take their iPads home. She said there’s no existing county-level plan to go to a 1-to-1 ratio for any more grade levels. She said a vast majority of students in these lower grade levels are already at about a 1-to-4 iPad-to-child ratio…

But she said Monday’s vote will allow some of the shared iPads in fourth grade to be moved down to third grade, to increase the ratio there. She said the money being used must be for technology. “I’m not particularly comfortable with lower-level kids using iPads as much,” Board President Ryan White said, and he asked if the school system was keeping an eye on iPad usage in elementary classes. He and fellow board member Ric Cavender, both fathers of young children, questioned Sparks about the move, but they ultimately voted for it.
Karl’s comment: Technology can be beneficial in education if it is used wisely and appropriately. The history of Kanawha County schools points to neither of those things being done. SHAME on those two compromising, spineless daddies.

Barboursville school evacuated after bomb threat 5-7-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Barboursville-school-evacuated-after-bomb-threat-509591021.html
All students are safe after a bomb threat prompted an evacuation Tuesday at a school in Cabell County. School district officials say there was a threat made towards Barboursville Elementary School. Karl’s comment: The children may be temporarily safe from a bomb, but their minds will be bombed every day with anti-God propaganda
.

Lawsuits claim Mercer County teacher physically abused pre-school aged students 5-3-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/lawsuits-claim-mercer-county-teacher-physically-abused-pre-school-aged-students
Three separate lawsuits have been filed in Mercer County that claim pre-school aged children were abused and mistreated by a teacher at Cumberland Heights Early Learning Center and staff who tried to report it were retaliated against by school officials…One of the suits was filed on behalf of B.H., a 3-year-old boy who has special needs and is non-verbal… The suit goes on to say that Belcher glued the boy's hands together for punishment, covered his mouth and nose forcibly to stop him from crying, repeatedly placed him in a restraint chair and would sometimes put him alone in the chair in a separate room with the lights off. A separate suit, filed on behalf of A.G., a 5-year-old girl in Belcher's class who does not have special needs, claimed she also was abused by Belcher…The suit said the girl was bullied at the school and Belcher placed her at the lunch table between the bullying student and that student's cousin. "On that occasion, A.G. was afraid and tried to move from her seat. Defendant Belcher reportedly slammed A.G. into the lunch table to force her back into her seat," the suit said. The suit also claims Belcher grabbed the girl by the backpack and pushed her, pulling out some of her hair. A.G's mother is also a principal at another school in Mercer County. She claims her job was threatened.

Amanda Shrewsbury also has filed suit. She was Belcher's teacher aide and reportedly witnessed Belcher abusing and neglecting students. "An interesting twist to this case, which makes it a little different from some others, is we also have allegations that some employees who work for the school system in Mercer County are facing some potential retaliation or that their jobs may be in jeopardy for their participation in this investigation," Akers said. In fall 2018, the suit states that Shrewsbury made her first verbal and e-mail complaints to principal Steve Hayes, who is also listed as a defendant in the three suits. Shrewsbury believes she made about 57 complaints about Belcher's alleged behavior between Thanksgiving 2018 and January 2019. She also said she notified superintendent Deborah Akers and other school personnel. The superintendent is also named as a defendant in the three suits. Karl’s comment: As I have pointed out before, “I cannot make this stuff up.”

Putnam SEU arrests school employee, foster care charity worker on sexual abuse charges 5-3-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/putnam-seu-arrests-school-employee-foster-care-charity-worker-on-sexual-abuse-charges
The Putnam County Special Enforcement Unit has arrested an employee of Cabell County schools who also does charity work for a foster care support program. Michael Jones, 33, of Hurricane is charged with three counts of sexual abuse by a parent, guardian, custodian or person in position of trust…According to the complaint, the investigation was started in January by the Putnam County Sheriff's Office after it received information Jones was sexually abusing children who were fostered, adopted and under his care. The details of the allegations are too graphic for publication but deputies believe there are three victims… Investigators also say he is a teacher at the Cabell County Career Technology Center. According to  it's website,  Jones is a Coding/APP/Game Designer. Karl’s comment: I cannot make this stuff up.

Former Logan County Schools superintendent begins prison sentence 5-2-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/former-logan-county-schools-superintendent-begins-prison-sentence
Prosecutors said the scheme began in 2011 when the Logan County Board of Education regularly purchased Apple iPods and iPads for Logan County Schools staff. The jury found that between 2011 and 2015, Doty stole at least 20 of these devices and either sold them on eBay for profit, or gave them to family members as gifts. Doty directed the purchase of the devices or purchased them herself, and then sold them online or gave them away to her family. Doty’s scheme included ordering more than $6,500 in wedding supplies with Logan County Board of Education money. These items included bread baskets, easels, drink dispensers, columns, decorative urns and a colonnade. Doty claimed that these items were requested by Logan County teachers, however, the teachers knew nothing of these orders.
Karl’s comment: The 8-5-16 article in the 2016 WV News was just the tip of the iceberg.

Jackson County mom fights to end bullying in schools 5-1-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/local-news/jackson-county-mom-fights-to-end-bullying-in-schools/1970219659
Kimberly Morris has personally been effected by bullying. Her 15-year-old son had to be pulled from school because it got so bad. "And come March of 6th grade, I'm in my house and I hear him screaming coming down the road and I'm like, 'that sounds like my son,' and I open the door and there he is with his eyes swollen, he could barely see, blood was coming out of his nose," said Kimberly. Kimberly's son had been beat up by school bullies while getting off the bus to go home. After hearing the news of three reported teen suicides in Jackson County, that's when she decided to do something - launching the "Communities Against Bullying" group on Facebook. On top of holding down a full-time job and homeschooling her son, she's been working hard to get the word out to educators, state legislators and even writing a letter to the White House…The group will have their first meeting on Monday, May 6th, 2019 at 6:30pm held at the Jackson County Public Library in Ripley, WV. Speakers at the meeting will include a licensed therapist, school resource officer, school counselor and WV House Delegate, Joshua Higginbotham (R-Putnam). Others in attendance will be Sen. Shelley Moore Capito along with WV House Delegate Steve Westfall (R-Jackson) and other educators and parents. Karl’s comment: It is wonderful that she is homeschooling her son. It is sad that she is wasting time trying to fix government schools. If it isn’t physical bullying, it will be spiritual bullying.

Kanawha County Schools taking applications for virtual elementary school pilot program 5-1-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/kanawha-county-schools-taking-applications-for-virtual-elementary-school-pilot-program
Kanawha County Schools is taking applications for third, fourth and fifth grade homeschooled or public school students to participate in a virtual elementary school pilot program…”After successful pilot programs with both our middle school and high school populations, we have designed a program for elementary school students that will allow for increased flexibility for those who need it most,” said Valery Harper, executive director of Kanawha County Schools Virtual School… District officials said 155 students are currently participating in the Kanawha County Schools virtual program at the middle and high school levels. Karl’s comment: This is a result of the “pain” felt by government schools over the loss of students. It is an attempt by g overnment school officials to continue to indoctrinate students and keep the tax money coming in.  It could be a SERIOUS problem.

2 people sentenced for high school student’s death 4-30-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/04/30/2-people-sentenced-for-high-school-students-death/
A Maryland man and woman were sentenced to decades in prison for the May 2016 death of a Berkeley County student. Sykebia Stewart, 25, and Kelvin Johnson, 26, were found guilty of distributing heroin to 18-year-old Jorge Mercado-Medrano, who later died at his home. Mercado-Medrano was a student at Spring Mills High School. Karl’s comment: Sad situation, but he is not the only one using hard drugs in West Virginia government schools.

Charleston Police locate handcuffed Capital High student using bloodhound 4-26-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/local-news/charleston-police-locate-handcuffed-capital-high-student-using-bloodhound/1956709618
The Charleston Police Department found the Capital High School student who escaped officers while wearing handcuffs by using a bloodhound. Police say the 15-year-old was found on the hillside above the baseball field at Capital High School. Karl’s comment: Just another day in the hood.

Kanawha County school board to vote on potential position cuts 4-25-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/kanawha-county-school-board-to-vote-on-potential-job-cuts
Kanawha County school board members are expected to vote Thursday night on proposed position cuts in the district. Superintendent Ron Duerring said there are about 60 positions that are proposed to be cut for the 2019-20 school year. About 500 students also have not yet enrolled for school for the next year. Kanawha County Schools Communications Director Briana Warner said from last year to the current school year, the district lost 563 students, which equates to a loss of about $4.2 million in the general budget for the next school year. Karl’s comment: That is how to do it! Removing the kids cuts the money and starves the monster.

Former Ohio County teacher arraigned on sexual abuse charge of former student 4-24-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/04/24/former-teacher-in-ohio-county-arraigned-on-sexual-abuse-charge-of-former-student/
A former teacher for Ohio County Schools was arraigned Wednesday in Ohio County Magistrate Court on a felony sexual abuse charge. Elizabeth Harbert, former teacher at Wheeling Park High School and Bridge Street Middle School in Wheeling, was charged with sexual abuse by a parent, guardian, custodian or a person of trust to a child after an investigation by the West Virginia State Police…According to the criminal complaint, Birch claims that he and Harbert, 30 years old in 2005, had sex at least 50 times at the residence while her husband was at work. Birch lived with Harbert for about one year at this time, the complaint stated. Birch then moved back to his grandmother’s house in 2006 when he was 15 years old, and said Harbert and himself had sex another 50 times at his grandmother’s house before Birch moved back in with Harbert later that year. In 2007, Birch, who was then 16 years old, conceived a child with Harbert, according to the criminal complaint…The criminal complaint says the two first met at Bridge Street Middle School when she was his track coach. Harbert divorced her husband in 2006 and according to Birch’s lawsuit, Birch and Harbert had four children together beginning with a child born in the summer of 2008 which was conceived in 2007. Karl’s comment: A writer could not make this stuff up if he was trying to pen an X-rated script. You can easily follow the thread of school personnel sex perversions throughout the WV School news headlines. Also see the comments on this issue on the main WV News  page and the June 1, 2008.

Two W.Va. teachers among TIME's 2019 most influential people 4-24-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Two-WVa-teachers-among-TIMEs-2019-most-influential-people-509011681.html
Jay O'Neal and Emily Comer made the list following the teacher strikes earlier this year in response to a proposed education bill. The pair is in TIME's "pioneers" category. Each person (or in this case, people) has a tribute -- a description of why he/she is influential. O'Neal and Comer's tribute was authored by Dolores Huerta, a civil rights activist who co-founded what is now the United Farm Workers of America: "One teacher can change a young person's life, giving them the confidence to pursue their biggest goals. But in the past year, teachers have left an impact well beyond their classrooms, launching a social-justice movement that was impossible to ignore. Teachers are the foundation of our democracy. They're the conscience of our society. When teachers stand up for themselves—as Jay O'Neal and Emily Comer did in West Virginia, and as others have since done in Oklahoma, Arizona, California and beyond—it is a message to all of us. If teachers are standing up, you can stand up. The only way to stop hatred and division in our country is through education, and that requires investing in our teachers. These strikes have been a wake-up call about the lack of education funding… The strike in 2019 was the second year in a row that West Virginia teachers made national headlines for rallying for change. (Bold font above added by Karl. See below.) Karl’s comment: In the 1950s Huerta  “ met the socialist labor activist Cesar Chavez (who was trained in activist tactics by Saul Alinsky).” She and Chavez later “created the National Farm Workers Association.” She “sponsored—along with such notables as Bella Abzug, Ruby Dee, Jane Fonda, and Cora Weiss—an anti-war protest known as “The Ring Around Congress,” which featured some 2,500 demonstrators who encircled the Capitol Building…The “Ring” was a project of the Communist Party-dominated Women Strike for Peace and other likeminded groups.” (https://www.discoverthenetworks.org/individuals/dolores-huerta/)

"Progressives maintain a “religion of social justice” that leads them to attack Christians who live their faith openly, according to a panel at the Conservative Political Action Conference.” (Bold font added by Karl.)
(https://www.christianpost.com/news/liberals-use-religion-of-social-justice-to-attack-christianity-says-cpac-panel.html)

For entries about the 2018 strike.

Group reaches out to high school students 4-24-19
https://www.herald-dispatch.com/group-reaches-out-to-high-school-students/article_bbe1e0e7-bf45-5a62-9377-5187eada08fa.html
More Than Addiction, a newly emerged local support group, addressed Hurricane High School on April 8 about the impact of substance abuse on the lives of those addicted and their loved ones. "You are not alone" — a powerful message that there is hope and help — was shared when the guest speakers, who were recovering addicts-turned-ambassadors and those who lost loved ones to overdose took stage to share their personal stories in front of hundreds of students… Melissa Pemberton was a successful high school athlete, when a car accident left her with a broken neck and took her grandfather's life. Being given ample amounts of painkillers by the doctor, combined with a trauma of losing the "most important person" in her life, started an opioid addiction that would last for many years. Despite her problem, she was able to get through college and get a master's degree in teaching. While working as middle school teacher she also coached volleyball. "I was living a double life," she said. "I smoked weed and took pills while at work." One day the police came to school and arrested her. Karl’s comment: Praise God for these folks. The point is what went on in the class room. Who knows how many attics are teaching as this post is read.

Second Cabell Midland student in custody after threats made on social media 4-17-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/cabell-county-deputies-searching-for-student-with-possible-connection-to-school-threat
Cabell County Sheriff Chuck Zerkle said a Cabell Midland High School student is in custody and two school lockdowns have been lifted after deputies investigated a threat made on social media. Zerkle said the student was associated with a student who was arrested Tuesday after making a threat on social media toward Cabell Midland High School, but the secondary threat Wednesday was "not as valid." Both students are male and attend Cabell Midland. Both lockdowns for Cabell Midland High and Ona Elementary schools have been lifted. Karl’s comment: See the 4-16 entry.

Suspect arrested following threat made toward Cabell Midland High School 4-16-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/suspect-arrested-following-threat-made-towards-cabell-midland-high-school
School officials said a threat was discovered on social media Tuesday afternoon referencing Cabell Midland High School. Officials said the Cabell County Sheriff's Office was notified and a suspect was arrested within the hour. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK.

New PAX program encouraging positive behaviors of students in Braxton, Lewis, Upshur counties 4-15-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/04/15/new-pax-program-encouraging-positive-behaviors-of-students-in-braxton-lewis-upshur-county-schools /
Upshur County will soon be the third county in West Virginia to offer elementary schools a program that helps to instill positive messages in kids in hopes of improving behavior in school. The PAX Good Behavior Game, created by Arizona-based Paxis Institute, reinforces positive behaviors while inhibiting unwanted behaviors. Studies have shown that the program, now in its 50th year, reduces lifetime drug use and increases graduation rates…Dr. Dennis Embry, president of the PAXIS Institute, said that classrooms in grades Pre-K through 5 will typically play the game three or more times each day while doing their regular studies…“It doesn’t matter in any way, shape, or form what the nature of the teaching is,” he said. “The kids are learning. They’re on teams so that they have to learn to work together. That’s an essential thing of humans.” The positive behaviors that PAX promotes are peace, productivity, health and happiness…At the end of the allotted time, the winners are then treated with special activities. “We might get to do 10 seconds of drumming on the desk with our pencils and figures. We might get to do a fun activity because we probably need to stand up and get a little physical activity,” Embry said…“The return on investment is 70 to 1 so every dollar spent on this, the students, teachers, schools, communities, state, the nation, save a hell of a lot of money,” Embry said . Karl’s comment: The founder, Dr. Dennis Embry, is featured on the Evolution Institute website (https://evolution-institute.org/profile/dennis-embry/).  The Evolution Institute claims to be different than other “nonprofits and think tanks: “Where others are counseled to have a single focus, the EI is capable of applying a single theoretical framework – evolution – to all major policy issues at all scales, from neighborhoods to nations to world history.” That is enough to nix this magical solution to the multiple problems of government school student behavior. The game makes some fabulous claims:

Improved education/employment outcomes: Better reading and math scores, reduced need for special education services, fewer repeated grades, increased high school graduation, more college graduation, more full-time employment. Reduced need for public assistance: Less utilization of public housing, public assistance, unemployment compensation. Less legal involvement: Reduced experience of violent crime, reduced likelihood of arrest or detention. Better Mental health: Reduced externalizing problems (ADHD, Conduct Disorders, violence), less internalizing problems (Depression, Anxiety Disorders), less utilization of medication, reduced suicide, and suicidal thoughts. Less Substance Abuse: Less binge drinking or alcohol dependence, less use of nicotine or marijuana, reduced likelihood of opiate use or addiction.

Then, there is the New Age term “Social and Emotional Learning”.

The PAX Good Behavior Game promotes social and emotional learning in all students. By engaging students in co-creating expectations and developing shared relational language and identity, children can begin to recognize their own thoughts and feelings as well as regulate their own emotions…
https://docs.wixstatic.com/ugd/81b197_11cd65fd5405441fb3b68a21454b93c8.pdf

WVEA hosts education forum in South Charleston to get more info out to legislators 4-11-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/04/11/wvea-hosts-education-forum-in-south-charleston-to-get-more-info-out-to-legislators/
The eight education forums put on by the West Virginia Department of Education are over but the education conversation is not. Thursday night at South Charleston Middle School the Kanawha County Education Association (KCEA), an affiliate of the West Virginia Education Association (WVEA), hosted an education stakeholder meeting. “We want everyone to give their honest opinion,” Dinah Adkins, the co-president of the KCEA said. “We are trying to stay neutral so that we give accurate information to the legislators and that is what we have wanted to do all along.” Adkins said the forum gave the opportunity to teachers, service professionals, community members, to come in and give their feelings on certain topics, while also welcoming new information. She said the results to the answers given would then be put to use. “We are going to take this information, tally it and take it back to WVEA who will then give that information to our legislators,” Adkins said. Karl’s comment: BWAHAHA! Teacher unions are NOT, and have NEVER been neutral. They teachers are their bottom line.

Lack of time and flexibility stand out in survey of education workers 4-10-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/04/10/lack-of-time-and-flexibility-stand-out-in-survey-of-education-workers/
Most of the more than 7,500 West Virginia educators who took part in a state Department of Education survey said they need more time and flexibility in order to help improve student achievement. Karl’s comment: Second verse, same as the first. They want more money and less teaching time and the public will get what they are paying for—NOT.

Suit claims Putnam board violated open meetings law in education strike 4-10-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/suit-claims-putnam-board-violated-open-meetings-law-in-education-strike
A lawsuit filed by a Putnam County resident against the Putnam County Board of Education claims the decision to keep Putnam County schools open during a two-day education strike was largely a political one and the board violated the state's open meetings law. Karl’s comment: This is an attempt by teacher unions to control the Putnam County Board of Education and to intimidate any other boards that may consider bucking the unions.

Teachers are not above reproach 4-7-19
http://www.newsandsentinel.com/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/2019/04/teachers-are-not-above-reproach/
As a retired teacher, I want to offer kudos to Jim Mullen for his insightful and courageous column about the plight of the current education system. He rightly cites the destructive influence of the teachers’ unions. These monolithic powerhouses care not a whit about students (and very little about teachers). They care very much about their own power and purses. Furthermore, teachers themselves bear some serious scrutiny, regardless of Mr. Simon Hargus’ blind belief in their moral and intellectual superiority. Teachers, by and large, are not a terribly smart bunch. As a teacher myself, I was often appalled by the lack of both knowledge and work ethic I saw in many of my colleagues. (bold font added) Karl’s comment: As a retired teacher, I say that she nailed it!

West Virginia high school teacher charged with battery against fellow teacher 4-5-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/university-high-school-teacher-charged-with-battery-against-fellow-educator/1902641030
Based on several witness statements, University High School teacher Philip Bienek-Cate, 50, of Westover grabbed another teacher by the arm in front of a classroom full of students at the high school. The other teacher attempted to break free of the hold, but Bienek-Cate continued the restraint, causing the victim to scream out for help… Karl’s comment: Great example for the kids.

Mary C. Snow principal wants off year-round calendar; calls scores tragic 10-3-16
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/news/education/mary-c-snow-principal-wants-off-year-round-calendar-calls/article_0ca0b797-892e-5a9c-a198-5d7f409eb553.html
Cheryl Plear said she had about 320 students show up to the Charleston school on its actual first day, July 12, but about a hundred more showed up about three weeks later, on Aug. 8, the date classes started for the vast majority of other Kanawha County public school students… Last school year, Mary C. Snow had the lowest English language arts standardized test proficiency rate of all Kanawha public schools… “When our kids see other kids out playing, swimming, doing activities, they’re not going to want to come to school,” Plear said. “When they’re living in a home with a brother or sister who’s going to middle school, ‘They’re still in bed, asleep, I’ve got to get up and go to school.’”… According to her report, 47 students already have six to 10 absences, 14 have 11-20 absences and seven have 21 or more. She said the seven students are some of the pupils the school couldn’t locate before the year started… Plear said she was not only concerned by the school’s overall proficiency rate, but the fact that so many students were scoring ones. She called it a “tragedy” and “crisis” that only 4 percent of last school year’s 45 tested fourth graders scored a 3 or 4 in English. Karl’s comment: I failed to find this 2016 article, but on April 4, 2019 a Charleston Gazette-Mail headline read, Mary C. Snow, 1 of 2 WV year-round public schools, moves to regular calendar.” (Page 1C). This is a perfect example of the leftist pie-in-the-sky, fruitcake, and futile efforts to help kids. The 2019 article had some of the SAME wording. It has taken well over two years to correct the stupid idea.

Did states with charter schools cluster below West Virginia in ACT scores? 4-3-19
https://www.politifact.com/west-virginia/statements/2019/apr/04/mike-romano/did-states-charter-schools-cluster-below-west-virg/
West Virginia state Sen. Mike Romano, a Democrat, recently took a swipe at charter schools. A Feb. 2  tweet by the West Virginia Senate Democrats quoted Romano criticizing a low ranking for the state in a report published by the American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative group. Romano sought to turn the tables by offering a more favorable ranking for West Virginia -- the state’s test scores for the ACT, a major college entrance exam -- and by taking a shot at charter schools, which West Virginia doesn’t allow. "We hear we are ranked 47th. I could never figure out where that came from, but I finally did, it was ALEC. I have put on your desk the rankings of ACT test scores, WV is 30th. Which states are listed in the bottom? 15 states with charter schools. We found the ALEC  report stating that West Virginia is ranked 47th in the nation. The group calculated that rating based on state academic standards, charter schools, homeschool regulation burden, private school choice, teacher quality, and digital learning. That’s a different measurement than ACT scores. So is Romano correct that West Virginia ranks 30th in ACT scores nationally, and that every state lower on the rankings has charter schools? We took a closer look. (Romano’s office did not respond to inquiries.)… he reality is that by now, most states allow charter schools -- 43 states, to be exact. So the list of states ranking above West Virginia is also chock-full of charter school states. In fact, every single state ranking above West Virginia except for North Dakota, South Dakota and Vermont allows charter schools… And there’s another problem. The ACT summary warns that it’s important to choose states carefully when making comparisons. The summary recommends only comparing states that have similar rates of taking the ACT. Why? The smaller the percentage of statewide graduates tested, the more likely it is that stronger, college-bound students will take the test, thereby producing higher scores. For West Virginia, that means the state can only be meaningfully compared to a small subset of states, rendering suspect the 50-state comparison Romano used… We rate the statement Mostly False. Karl’s comment: Translation—Liberals mostly lie. See the next entry.

Have West Virginia test scores tended to drop after 4th grade? 4-3-19
https://www.politifact.com/west-virginia/statements/2019/apr/03/mitch-carmichael/have-west-virginia-test-scores-tended-drop-between/
The president of the West Virginia state Senate, Mitch Carmichael, recently said that students in the state consistently rank well below students elsewhere when comparing test scores… In West Virginia, he said, "our students enter in at fourth grade the first time they’re tested, 37th or 38th in the nation—which is not good, but it’s not horrible. By the time they’re in the 8th grade, they’re 46th or 47th, and then upon 11th grade testing they’re near last."… We turned to the Nation’s Report Card, an archive of National Assessment of Educational Progress test scores… For eighth grade, the rankings aren’t quite as low as Carmichael had indicated, but he does have the general trend line correct: In most cases, West Virginia’s ranking dropped in math and reading between fourth and eighth grade. What about testing near the end of high school? The data that’s available makes it difficult to say… So while it looks like West Virginia improved dramatically by the end of high school, there were actually so few states participating that each of these rankings represents a last-place slot for that year…We rate the statement Mostly True. Karl’s comment: Translation—conservative mostly tell the truth.

Department of Education holds last forum in Eastern Panhandle 4-3-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/04/03/department-of-education-holds-last-forum-in-eastern-panhandle/
The West Virginia Department of Education held its final forum Wednesday regarding possible changes to the state’s education system. The event, held at Berkeley Springs High School, included roundtable discussions on issues facing public education and related possible approaches lawmakers can make during this year’s special legislative session. State Superintendent of Schools Steve Paine said the forums were a wise investment of time… More than 18,000 surveys from students, parents and other stakeholders were submitted. Karl’s comment: MARK MY WORDS: IT IS ALL A WASTE OF TIME AND NOTHING WILL IMPROVE.

Local high school issues tickets as teen vaping surges 4-1-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/kanawha-county-schools-seeks-to-curb-teen-vaping
As the popularity of e-cigarettes continues to rise among teens, tickets are being issued at one Kanawha County school, Capital High School, to students who vape… Kanawha County school officials said they have seen high confiscation rates of e-cigarettes, and some high schools are now using the tough love approach to make students understand it's not acceptable. No matter what the schools do, it going to be around," said Cameron, a 19-year-old Capital High School student… The addiction is leading kids to vape at school, which is becoming a problem for school administrators and Charleston Police Department Cpl. Travis Hill, Capital High School's school prevention resource officer… Students caught are criminally cited for underage tobacco use or possession. Their parents are sent a summons in the mail, and they must appear in front of a judge. "First offense is a $50 fine and eight hours of community service, and second offense it doubles. Karl’s comment: This is NOT an April Fool joke!

Loosen union grip on public schools 3-31-19
http://www.newsandsentinel.com/opinion/local-columns/2019/03/loosen-union-grip-on-public-schools/
The establishment, unions, teachers and leftists want to maintain the status quo of total failure to educate, yet receive yearly raises and increased benefits. Everything he says is exactly 180 degrees from facts and the truth…(U) nions harassed, threatened and intimidated lawmakers last year and received a pay raise for abject failure and incompetence in educating young people. They also learned that an illegal strike suddenly became legal due to inaction by the entire education bureaucracy.

After chewing on the following data from past Wood County standardized test scores, let them digest and then decide if you are on the teacher union’s side or the side of the uneducated children we dump into a competitive world without the ability to compete. 

They have the same tired talking points, but ignore facts while telling taxpayers fairy tales like,  “It’s all about the children,”

Proficiency in math:

* From third grade to 11th grade, a steady drop from 47 percent to 21 percent.

* Going into their senior year, 21 percent of Wood County students are proficient in math after being in the system for 13 years.

Proficiency in science:

* Average proficiency in science in fourth, sixth, and tenth grades is 41 percent

Proficiency in reading/language arts:

* Going into their senior year, 51 percent are proficient…

In reality, we have the very best radical leftwing indoctrination system our taxpayer money will buy…Schools teach that capitalism is evil and Marxism is fair.

Karl’s comment: WOW. This guy gets it. Too bad he did not call for an exodus into educational freedom.

Parents concerned after Putnam County bus accident 3-21-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/parents-question-putnam-county-schools-handling-of-bus-accident
Some Putnam County parents are concerned after a bus crash earlier this week in the county. They said their children were injured when two buses collided in Winfield school traffic Monday, but board members said no one claimed to be injured when the crash happened. Putnam County said in a statement that it follows the West Virginia Board of Education policy concerning bus accidents. Parents, however, were not notified of the accident. Karl’s comment: Government school officials do not have to tell you if your daughter gets an abortion, so this is consistent.

Education reform forums underway ahead of special session 3-18-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/First-of-seven-education-reform-forums-held-at-Cabell-Midland--507332131.html
Teachers, parents and students are getting an opportunity to share their vision of what changes need to be made ahead of the governor's special session on education. The first of seven public forums across the state was held Monday… During the past legislative session, teachers went on strike, upset over charter schools and ESA's in the controversial education reform bill that ultimately was defeated…Teachers were grateful for the platform to voice their thoughts on how to improve education… Kathie Hess Crouse lives in Buffalo in Putnam County and home-schools her kids. She's in favor of the creation of charter schools. "(Public education) is a system that's gone too far downhill," Hess said. "There's no correcting it quickly." Karl’s comment: The purpose is to “fix”the unfixable--public education. Teacher input will not help since teachers have had input for decades. Mrs. Hess is a leader of West Virginia Home Educators Association. Her quote should have stopped after “it” because there is no way to correct public education.

Former Jefferson County teacher investigated for child pornography in Maryland 3-11-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/03/11/former-jefferson-county-teacher-investigated-for-child-pornography-in-maryland/
A Maryland law enforcement agency has identified a former Jefferson County Schools teacher as the subject of a search and seizure of child pornography. The Federick County, Maryland Sheriff’s Department notified Jefferson County Schools on March 5 that Stephen Marsh was part of an ongoing investigation. He previously retired as a teacher and has served as a substitute teacher. Karl’s comment: You can easily follow the thread of school personnel sex perversions throughout the WV School news headlines. Also see the comments on this issue on the main WV News page and the June 1, 2008.

Nitro Showcats perfrom 'Devil Wears Prada' 3-9-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Nitro-Showcats-perfrom-Devil-wears-Prada-506912801.html
There is one thing to count on every year from the Nitro Showcats. An edgy show theme that breaks from the norm. It must be working after all the Showcats have already won two grand championships this season. Tony profiles their "Devil Wears Prada" theme. Karl’s comment: Leaving out the first word of the title, (Andy) “meets an attractive young writer, Christian Thompson, who offers to help her with her career… Andy finally succumbs to Christian's charms and, after spending the night with him…”
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Devil_Wears_Prada_(film)#Plot) From the book: “1 use of ‘a**hole,’ and several of ‘shit’.” (https://m.imdb.com/title/tt0458352/parentalguide/profanity) From the movie: “A young man says to a young woman, ‘I can think of something we can do that does not require any clothes.’” And there are “19 religious exclamations.” (https://kids-in-mind.com/d/devilwearsprada.htm)

School officials investigate threat written on bathroom stall at Huntington Middle School 3-7-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/school-officials-investigate-threat-written-on-bathroom-wall-at-huntington-middle-school
Cabell County school officials are investigating a threat that was written Thursday morning on a bathroom stall of Huntington Middle School. Karl’s comment: Back when I taught we frequently found obscene messages on the bathroom walls, but nowadays it is TICK, TICK, TICK. See the 2-22 entry.

AFT-WV: 'We are not going to accept underfunding, corporate-driven reform schemes' 3-6-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/aft-west-virginia-to-announce-results-of-education-reform-survey
The American Federation of Teachers-West Virginia announced Wednesday the results of an education reform survey of school employees, parents and community members – something it said the Legislature failed to do. “All children deserve a powerful, purposeful public education that supports their well-being, engages them deeply in learning and helps them build the skills to reach their potential and engage in our democracy and in our society,” Fred Alpert, president of the AFT-WV, said at a news conference…When asked how policymakers empower individual school staff to improve student achievement, the two top answers were less focus on standardized testing, 29 percent, and collaboration time, 24 percent…When asked what changes in the school system enable students to reach their maximum potential, 31 percent said smaller class sizes, and 21 percent said less testing…When asked what changes in the school system enable students to reach their maximum potential, 31 percent said smaller class sizes, and 21 percent said less testing…Survey participants were asked how often they have witnessed student behavior that would likely be improved with wraparound services such as expanded physical, mental and emotional health services and family support services. Fifty-four percent responded every school day, and 35 percent said frequently. Karl’s comment: This is all in the context of the opush for teacher pay raises. Teacher unions continue their bully tactics. Notice, that their “solutions” to public school PROBLEMS is to make life easier for teachers—a decrease in class size and an increase collaboration (i.e. coffee) time. Also, the call for less focus on standardized testing is actually a call to cover up the continuing academic failures of government schooled students. (Search “test” on each  WV News page.)  

Deputies say man facing several charges following incident at elementary school 3-5-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/deputies-say-man-facing-several-charges-following-incident-at-elementary-school
Deputies said Keaton attempted to remove a child Monday from Martha Elementary School. Deputies said Keaton placed the child inside the principal's unlocked vehicle. The principal contacted law enforcement after getting the child away from Keaton, deputies said. Deputies said he spit on them, began yelling, damaged the principal's car and urinated on the school's flag pole. Karl’s comment: Welcome to another day at government educshun (spelling intentional).

BOE investigates "N-word passes" distributed at two West Virginia schools 2-28-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/jefferson-county-investigates-n-word-passes-distributed-at-two-schools/1820055748
The Jefferson County Board of Education launched an investigation into what the board is calling alleged racism at two local schools.  This is after Jefferson High School student Cameron Henderson brought into attention a post on Snapchat that read,  "N-word passes." These "N-word passes" initially started at Washington High School by a student, according to the school district. Superintendent Bondy Shay Gibson says they have since been disciplined.  Karl’s comment: What can one say?

One person arrested after threat made to Cabell County school 2-22-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/one-person-arrested-after-threat-made-to-cabell-co-school
Huntington Police Chief Hank Dial said the Huntington Police Department received reports of a juvenile making threats to a group of Huntington High students Thursday night. Police found them to be credible threats and arrested the juvenile. Karl’s comment: See the 2-13 entry.

Putnam hopes to stay open for students during teacher strike 2-18-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Students-arrive-in-Putnam-Co-as-teachers-strike--506034841.html
A spokesperson with Putnam County Schools says the county will make every attempt to keep schools open during the statewide strike…The county is the only one in the state open Tuesday following the announcement of the strike. All other 54 counties closed late Monday evening. Teachers, parents and other school personnel lined the streets in front of several schools as students arrived early Tuesday…WSAZ didn't see a bus leave the garage to pick up students. A group of protesters were out at a bus garage early Tuesday morning, many of them from Cabell County. Karl’s comment: The Kanawha County Textbook Protesters were vilified for picketing bus garages. In the 1990 strike, teachers were arrested for blocking buses with their bodies. LIBERALS ARE HYPOCRITES AND WORSE! See the next entry.

Union Leaders Announce West Virginia Teacher Strike 2-18-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/west-virginia/union-leaders-announce-west-virginia-teacher-strike/1792229299
Education union leaders have announced a statewide teacher strike effective tomorrow in West Virginia…Teachers won a 5 percent pay raise after a strike last year. Karl’s comment: See the 2-9 entry below.

Parents and teachers react to proposal of police in every school in W.Va. 2-15-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Parents-and-teachers-react-to-proposal-of-police-in-every-school-in-West-Virginia--505922891.html
When parents see school shootings reported across the country, one of the automatic responses is to worry if it could ever happen here… It's one of the reasons they're in favor of a new aspect to the education reform bill that would lead to a police officer being placed at every school in the state. The cost is projected at $40 million a year. Karl’s comment: One word: CRAZY, but see the TICK, TICK, TICKS throughout these WV News pages.

Sheriff Fridley Says Investigation Underway After Potential Security Threat At Midland Trail 2-13-19
https://woay.tv/update-sheriff-fridley-says-investigation-underway-after-potential-security-threat-at-midland-trail/
At about 10:30 this morning, notification was received of a potential security situation at Midland Trail High School. Multiple Deputies were on scene within minutes and immediately began securing the structure and its students. The school staff and deputies followed in-place procedures, and every measure was taken to render the location safe, and students/staff secure and comfortable. The school was under lockdown and search status for about two hours before students and staff were released back to normal status. Karl’s comment: I could not make this stuff up. See the next comment.

Bomb threat now resolved at Buckhannon-Upshur High School 2-13-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/02/13/bomb-threat-now-resolved-at-buckhannon-upshur-high-school/
The “all clear” has been given at Buckhannon-Upshur High School, after a bomb threat at the school Wednesday morning. Student Services contacted parents at around 10 a.m. Wednesday, notifying of a bomb threat at the school…One parent told WAJR-Clarksburg that students were told the threat was initially a drill. Karl’s comment: I could not make this stuff up. See the next comment.

Lincoln County school evacuated after bomb threat 2-12-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/School-evacuated-after-bomb-threat--505729211.html
Guyan Valley Middle School in Lincoln County is currently being evacuated after a bomb threat Tuesday afternoon. According to troopers, a student in the classroom said they he/she was going to blow up the school. School leaders took students out of the building as a precaution. West Virginia State Police troopers are on their way to the school. They say it is likely the juvenile could be charged with making terroristic threats. Karl’s comment: See the next comment.

Putnam County Schools adding security Monday following threat 2-10-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Putnam-County-schools-adding-security-following-threat-505647421.html
The Putnam County Sheriff's Office says they are adding security to all high schools on Monday following a non-credible threat. They say the threat was made over social media towards the high schools…They say a fake account made the threat and aren't sure who is responsible but are continuing to investigate. The department says they will have extra security at all high schools through Monday along with the school resource officers. Karl’s comment: Shaking my head. See the 1-25 entry below.

West Virginia unions approve possible work action against education bill 2-9-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/west-virginia-unions-approve-possible-work-action-against-education-bill
About 200 people from three different West Virginia education unions met in Flatwoods Saturday afternoon. They met to report the results of a strike authorization vote that took place this past week on approving a work stoppage. "Our educators across the state have overwhelmingly given the confidence of the three organizations to call a work action as needed during this fight for public education," West Virginia Education Association President Dale Lee said. Karl’s comment:The union thugs run this failed system. They showed their power at the illegal strike last year.

Disturbing audio recording made inside an elementary school classroom in West Virginia 2-7-19
https://wchstv.com/news/nation-world/disturbing-audio-recording-made-inside-an-elementary-school-classroom-in-west-virginia
A hidden recording device in a special education classroom is raising alarming questions about what went on inside a classroom at an elementary school in Berkeley County, West Virginia…Amber Pack sent her 8-year-old daughter to class with a recording device after the child didn't want to go back to school.
Instructor #1:
 "I ought to back hand you right in your teeth. How is that for anxiety?"
Instructor #1:  "This one I could punch her right in her face."
Instructor #2:  "You got to go pee-pee? Pee-pee? Or do you not have to go pee-pee and you just want to go **** *** in a chair?"
Instructor #2:  "I'm going to pull your hair until you start crying."
Instructor #2:  "I am gonna beat your butt for sure and Owen you're gonna get one just just cause."

Karl’s comment : Sad, sickening, shameful, and scandalous!
2-8-19 Update: Berkeley County Prosecuting Attorney Catie Wilkes Delligatti said Friday that a parent’s secret audio recording at her child’s elementary school shows numerous instances of verbal abuse of children by employees, but no evidence of a crime. Delligatti said in a statement that the verbal treatment of the children at Berkeley Heights Elementary in Martinsburg is “shocking and disturbing,” but verbal abuse, under state law, is not a criminal act.
(https://www.heraldmailmedia.com/news/tri_state/west_virginia/prosecutor-verbal-abuse-at-martinsburg-elementary-school-shocking-and-disturbing/article_deeeb872-bff8-5789-b67b-fdcd2c1c1549.html)
Karl’s comment: How about teachers or principals who have "misgendered" a student? “The act of purposely referring to someone with their pretransition pronouns is known as misgendering and can be considered a form of hate crime.” (https://www.newsweek.com/peter-vlaming-west-point-high-school-teacher-fired-misgender-student-refused-1248615)

Parkersburg High School instructor arraigned on sex charge 2-2-19
http://www.newsandsentinel.com/news/local-news/2019/02/parkersburg-high-school-instructor-arraigned-on-sex-charge/
Brad Ritchie, a special education teacher and assistant instructor of band at Parkersburg High School, was arraigned Friday in Wood County Magistrate Court… According to the criminal complaint, the alleged victim, a male juvenile, was a student of Ritchie’s. Karl’s comment: You can easily follow the thread of school personnel sex perversions throughout the WV School news headlines. Also see the comments on this issue on the main  WV News  page and the June 1, 2008.

Three Ohio County Teachers Allege Sex, Gender Harassment in Civil Lawsuit Against Bridge Street Middle Principal 2-1-19
http://www.theintelligencer.net/news/top-headlines/2019/01/three-ohio-county-teachers-allege-sex-gender-harassment-in-civil-lawsuit-against-bridge-street-middle-principal/
Three Ohio County middle school teachers have filed a sex- and gender-based harassment lawsuit against Bridge Street Middle School Principal Joseph Kolb for allegedly creating a hostile work environment… The first accusation is listed as happening on Oct. 27, 2017, when Kolb allegedly attempted to open a bathroom door while teacher Rachel Miller was using the restroom… Kolb’s harassment of Troullos was “more persistent and severe,” the lawsuit states. It recounts a number of suspect stares and lewd, profane comments aimed her way… Ammirante is a relative of Kolb’s ex-wife, the lawsuit states. After his separation and divorce, Kolb allegedly “commenced a campaign to harass and intimidate Ammirante,” both on and off school property. He allegedly sent her harassing and profane text messages from his county-issued cell phone and visited her classroom more often than any other teacher’s, according to the lawsuit… Based on the police report, the board had Kolb escorted from Bridge Street Middle School by a police office… Karl’s comment: Public school = Peyton Place.

Kanawha County Board of Education passes resolution opposing education bill 1-30-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/01/30/kanawha-county-board-of-education-passes-resolution-opposing-education-bill/
The largest school system in the state of West Virginia has come out in opposition to the Omnibus Education Bill being considered in the state Senate. The Kanawha County Board of Education (KCBOE) held a special session on Wednesday at the board office to present a resolution to SB 451. The KCBOE passed the resolution quickly, 5-0. “There are certain provisions in that bill that the board believes would be detrimental to our mission of providing a thorough and efficient education to all students in our county,” Ryan White, the KCBOE President, told the media…At the meeting, KCBOE member Ric Cavender said the state and county should focus on its own schools first before thinking of charters. “We are not in the position as a county and a state, in my opinion,” he said. “We are struggling as it is to fund our schools appropriately. We just passed a levy to better fund our HVAC system and get the things our student’s need to learn in a comfortable environment. We are doing everything we can just to fund the schools we have.”…“If certain aspects of this bill were there and not others, I would probably be more supportive,” he said. “When they are shoving all this other stuff in here and pushing charter schools down our throats, there is no way I can support it.” Karl’s comment: Kanawha County Schools is controlled by teacher unions and Satan. Regarding the latter, see Blasphemy in School, Textbook War, and the Evolution Resolution.

W.Va. groups call proposed reform bill 'radical,' say it would hurt public education 1-28-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/education-groups-to-hold-news-conference-to-express-concerns-about-proposed-reform-bill
Representatives of group after group stepped up to the podium Monday and gave a blistering review of a proposed education reform bill sailing through the West Virginia Senate, calling it a “radical” measure that is revenge for the nine-day strike school employees had last year. “It’s clear the Senate leadership is playing games,” said Dale Lee, president of the West Virginia Education Association, at a news conference at the state Capitol in Charleston. “Unfortunately, they are playing games with our children’s future and the livelihood of our educators.”…In addition to the pay raises and PEIA funding, the bill calls for public charter schools, increasing elementary school class sizes and requiring the prior authorization of union due payments. Under the proposed legislation, teachers would not be paid if there is another work stoppage that closes schools. Meanwhile, Senate President Mitch Carmichael has said there is a need for reform because the current education system "is not serving the needs of our children."…Asked if teachers and their unions would consider another strike as a result of the bill, Lee said representatives are at the Capitol every day and are seeing what happens. “Everything is on the table at this point,” Lee said. The coalition at the news conference included West Virginia education groups representing county superintendents, school superintendents, school administrators, teachers and service professionals. Fred Albert, president of the American Federation of Teachers-West Virginia, called the proposed legislation a “radical” bill … Albert said every county has declining enrollment yet the proposal to create charter schools, which would make those schools available for public funding, would take money away from public education. “What do they want to do? Give the money to parents who send their kids to private schools,” he said. Karl’s comment: This is a sample of the immense news coverage about this “education reform bill.” As I have said, “I am a retired teacher and former picket captain from the 1990 strike and I guarantee WV tax payers that the unions only have their membership in mind when they claim to want to improve schools.”

Juvenile taken into custody after threat against South Middle School in Morgantown 1-25-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/01/25/juvenile-taken-into-custody-after-threat-against-south-middle-school/
Police have taken an unidentified minor into custody in Morgantown over alleged threats made at South Middle School. Officers learned of the threat late Thursday night, near 11:00 p.m. Investigators took the suspect into custody without incident, but did not release the nature of the threat. The minor is now in a juvenile detention facility pending a hearing. Karl’s comment: TICK, TICK, TICK. See previous year’s WV School News items for “TICK, TICK, TICK.”

GPAs, not just tests, may soon let college-goers avoid remedial education 1-20-19
Page 1B, Charleston Gazette-Mail
More West Virginia students who don’t meet state-set thresholds on the SAT, ACT, Accuplacer or other tests may soon be able to avoid remedial education courses in the state’s public colleges. Four-year colleges can instead rely on grade point averages — which aren’t consistent from school to school or class to class — to let students avoid remedial education, according to one state policy that’s already taken effect. Another proposed policy whose public comment period ends today would expand this to community colleges, and legislation that’s moving through the House of Delegates would take that further…About a quarter of West Virginia’s 2017 high school graduates who enrolled in the state’s public colleges were required to enroll in remedial classes to learn topics they should have learned in high school. Karl’s comment: Even though they claim that the percentage enrolled in remedial classes is down from 2016 this plan is still a con-job!

For better education, W.Va. needs school choice 1-19-19
Page 5A, Charleston Gazette-Mail
The governor is talking about it. The Senate President and the Speaker of the House are talking about it. It is public education, one of the top priorities of any civilized society. Everyone talks about the need to improve K-12 public education in West Virginia…West Virginians have recognized the need to improve education for many years…
Karl’s comment: This op-ed is part of the National School Choice Week hype. It attacks the education bureaucracy. That is a good point, but does not take into account that this type of “school choice” is still government controlled. It is “just the same dog on a longer leash.”

School Choice an Improve the State Economy 1-19-19
Page 5A, Charleston Gazette-Mail
At present, the educational system in West Virginia needs major improvement. Results from standardized tests put the state below many of its peers on “the nation’s report card.” For instance, in eighth grade only about one-quarter of students could achieve levels of proficiency in math (24 percent) or reading (28 percent). And only two percent of West Virginia students –one in 50—achieved advanced levels in reading.
Karl’s comment: This op-ed writer is promoting National School Choice Week and promotes Education Savings Accounts and “permitting parents to select private schools. It is a trap, and Christin parents must avoid it. See Money/Financial Issues.

W.Va. Public Schools can Lead Nation (Let’s begin the journey to improve K-12 education in state) by Senator Mitch Carmichael, Senate President. Pg 2D, 1-18-19
There is no greater responsibility of state government than to provide a thorough education for our children. Thomas Jefferson felt so strongly about the importance of public education that he wrote the following: “I think by far the most important bill in our whole code is that for the diffusion of knowledge among the people. No other sure foundation can be devised, for the preservation of freedom and happiness.”… The evidence prepared by the United States Department of Education’s National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) does not reflect well on West Virginia’s public education system. Compared to students in other states, West Virginia struggles to provide our children with an education that is equal to their peers throughout America… The evidence prepared by the United States Department of Education’s National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) does not reflect well on West Virginia’s public education system. Compared to students in other states, West Virginia struggles to provide our children with an education that is equal to their peers throughout America… Students deserve a world-class education that will develop their mind, curiosity, and God-given talent.

Faced with the unpleasant evidence that the West Virginia education system is struggling to provide students with skills that are on par with students in other states, everybody — teachers, students, and citizens alike — should be motivated to make changes that will improve outcomes for our children. Every responsible citizen should make it their duty to improve our education system. Our children deserve the best. The first step is to insure that teachers are well-compensated… In addition, we should consider concepts that other states have used to improve student achievement such as empowering parents and students with options that better serve their needs, charter schools, and Education Savings Accounts… In the words of President John F. Kennedy: “Our progress as a nation can be no swifter than our progress in education… I am confident that the West Virginia public education system can be the best in the nation. Let us begin the journey that will enable our youth to realize their amazing potential. Why would we not do all we can for our children?
Karl’s comment: This is a fool’s errand to a fool’s paradise where a fool and his money are soon parted. Using a chess term, fool’s mate, I make two moves: 1. Don’t read these WV News pages. 2. Don’t look up the definition of insanity. The tax paying people are pawns.

Deputies: Teacher gives alcohol to two teens involved in crash 1-17-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Deputies-Teacher-gives-alcohol-to-two-teens-involved-in-crash-504500451.html
A teacher from Mingo County was arrested after allegedly giving alcohol to two teenagers, county sheriff’s deputies say. Kandace Dick, who was arrested earlier on a public intoxication charge, faces two counts of delivery of alcohol to a minor and two counts of child neglect resulting in injury…Deputies say on Wednesday morning Dick gave alcohol to 15- and 17-year-old youths. Investigators say both teens later drove from Tug Valley High School to a fast food restaurant. They crashed on the way back to the school as the 15-year-old was driving…Both teens were taken to the hospital where they were treated and released. Karl’s comments: This sad news is staggering. Another report ( https://wchstv.com/news/local/records-say-two-teens-crash-vehicle-after-being-given-alcohol-by-teacher ) said, “after giving the students alcohol, she gave them the keys to her vehicle.”

Meadows school lockdown causes parents to worry about school security 1-17-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/meadows-school-lockdown-causes-parents-to-worry-about-school-security
More than a day after a mystery man was kicked out of a Cabell County elementary school, officials can't say who that man was or why he was there. A school lockdown Wednesday afternoon at Meadows Elementary has put parents on high alert…. Parents (are) hoping schools will take a better look at their security to prevent further incidents. Karl’s comment: Why don’t the parents worry about the security of their children’s minds and hearts?

Are W.Va. schools free and efficient? 1-16-19
(Daily Mail Opinion columnist Mark Sadd is a Charleston attorney and former Daily Mail business editor.)
https://www.wvgazettemail.com/opinion/daily_mail_opinion/daily_mail_columnists/mark_sadd/mark-
sadd-are-w-va-schools-free-and-efficient-daily/article_29cc3a30-5815-59d7-9a66-b68368de3735.html
The West Virginia Constitution requires the Legislature to provide for a “thorough and efficient system of free schools.” But like the old saw about the Holy Roman Empire, West Virginia’s public schools are neither thorough nor efficient nor free…Public schools consume an ever greater share of public dollars, currently 44 percent of the state’s general revenue budget, one of the highest percentages among the states…(T)he average public school teacher annual salary in West Virginia is $52,000, or 39th in the nation. The average West Virginia worker makes far less…So, efficiency measures foremost must include standards of student performance. Are our public school children well-educated? Are they being prepared for lives open and dedicated to work, stable families and lively communities? By all of these measures, relative to spending, they certainly are not. Test scores are near the bottom in the nation. Our college-going rate is among the lowest. Our labor participation rate is the lowest. Our public schools are not thorough. Rigor and with it discipline, order and self-control are not valued much less imposed throughout our public schools… Truancy is epidemic among both students and teachers. At the moment, there are 700 classrooms without certified teachers in them. To the dismay of some, administrators and school boards are lowering curricular and graduation standards to give the appearance of higher achievement. Karl’s comments: This secular source says it as clearly as I can.

Preston High student arrested for allegedly punching assistant principal 1-14-19
http://wvmetronews.com/2019/01/14/preston-high-student-arrested-for-allegedly-punching-assistant-principal/
An 18-year-old Preston High student was charged with malicious or unlawful battery after he allegedly hit an assistant principal in the jaw…Metz was being restrained by five to six male staff members when she responded to a call at the school. Karl’s comment: Another day on the cell block of a government school.

West Virginia public high school graduation rate up 1-11-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/west-virginia-public-high-school-graduation-rate-up
West Virginia's public high school four-year graduation rate last school year was 90 percent, up from 89 percent the previous school year… The graduation rates ranged from 83 percent in Kanawha and Cabell counties to 97 percent in Doddridge, Lewis, Mingo, Morgan, Putnam and Tyler counties… Only 22 percent of juniors in the 2016-2017 school year were deemed at least "proficient" on the state math standardized test. About half were judged at least proficient in English. West Virginia students don't have to score proficient on these tests to graduate. Karl’s comment: Graduation rates are meaningless. As reported in previous years, college remediation classes for WV “grads” are high. Also, the FACTS about proficiency scores and, more important the NAEP scores point toward the likelihood that some students are simply promoted without merit. Be sure to see the reports of West Virginia public school test performance. Look for "report of West Virginia public school test performance" on individual year pages (not all pages have the data).

Kanawha County teachers participate in statewide walk-in 1-10-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/Kanawha-County-teachers-participate-in-statewide-walk-in-504184961.html
Less than a year after teachers in West Virginia went on strike, they are back out in force again. This time, teachers walked into school as group to send a message to lawmakers on the first day of the session. Teachers stood outside their schools for about 30 minutes Wednesday morning and then walked into school as a group. The walk-in was called the "State of the School's Address." Teachers are hoping this sends a strong message to Governor Jim Justice and lawmakers that they are closely watching the moves they make to improve public education… "It made us feel good that we were standing up for our students," said Dinah Adkins, the Co-President of the Kanawha County Education Association. The strike ended when Governor Justice proposed a 5-percent pay increase for state workers and dedicated $100 million in state surplus to fund PEIA, the state's health insurance fund… Lawmakers assure they will be focusing heavily on education during the session and working to make sure teachers earn better pay. "We recognize that our teachers have been underpaid and we provided the largest pay raise in state history last year and we are committed to doing so again," said Senate President Mitch Carmichael. Karl’s comment:The bottom line is that it about $$$$$.

Greenbrier County teacher charged after arranging drug deals with students 1-8-19
https://wchstv.com/news/local/records-greenbrier-county-teacher-charged-after-arranging-drug-deals-with-students
Susan Lynn Surber, 53, of White Sulphur Springs is charged with delivery of a controlled substance, according to a criminal complaint filed in Greenbrier County Magistrate Court. About 11 a.m. Monday, officers responded to a complaint that indicated a mother discovered text messages on her juvenile daughter’s cell phone that referenced illegal drug transactions between the daughter and her teacher, Surber. T he juvenile admitted to officers to helping Surber arrange drug deals, the complaint said. Officers obtained a video interview where Surber admitted to trading alprazolam for marijuana. The teacher said on about 10 to 12 occasions, she traded her prescription alprazolam for marijuana, the complaint said. Karl’s comment: This is just another of dozens of horrible headlines in these WV News  pages.

New tool allows West Virginia to track education progress 1-8-19
https://www.wsaz.com/content/news/New-tool-allows-West-Virginia-to-track-education-progress-504051541.html
An online tool to track the progress of public education is now available in West Virginia. The West Virginia Chamber of Commerce announced Tuesday that the "Education Dashboard" will include a wide variety of graphics and information related to education in the state. The dashboard is going to cover student performance, school performance, education attainment, and education finances and spending…He said this idea stems from members of the chamber who live in all 55 counties and are concerned about the quality of public education in the state. "Unfortunately, education results in West Virginia continue to lag behind most states. Karl’s comment: This is a handy resource to see how terrible WV government schools actually are.

Mice Problem at Elementary School Raises Parents' Concerns on Safety 1-8-19
https://www.wowktv.com/news/local-news/mice-problem-at-elementary-school-raises-parents-concerns-on-safety/1692666902
The problem has been going on for the last few days but those frustrated parents said the school never contacted them to inform them until later this afternoon. The school called parents with a recorded message from the principal: "good evening Point Harmony families, this is Mrs. Cochran, your principal. I wanted to let you know that the health department, Kanawha County Schools Board of Education and our pest control company, Orkin, are aware of the mice in our schools..."… Guidelines by the West Virginia Department of Agriculture state that there are only two ways to deal with mice in a school environment, non-chemical control measures like glue traps and poisonous bait, for which PHES is using both. However, the problem is leaving parents feeling uneasy about sending their children to school… As for now, the Board of Education said the conditions are safe for students, as the safety of children is its first priority. Karl’s comment: Of course this could happen in a Christian school. The point is that those parents who were “ feeling uneasy about sending their children to school” should be much more worried about the ungodly ideas their children will come in contact with in government schools
.

North Central West Virginia school officials seek to recruit teachers as nationwide shortage continues 1-6-19
https://www.wvnews.com/theet/news/north-central-west-virginia-school-officials-seek-to-recruit-teachers/article_cd14d3a0-b5a4-5526-8457-5b4ec816b240.html
Local counties continue to feel the effects of a nationwide teachers shortage, according to school officials. A U.S. Department of Education list shows shortages in schools in 32 West Virginia counties, including Marion, Monongalia, Preston and Randolph. Subjects in need of additional qualified teachers include art and music education, special education, health and physical fitness and world languages. Karl’s comment: This has been an on-going problem. However, many “certified” teachers are lousy. With today’s technology, parents can educate their own children successfully.

While discussing education, don't forget the students 1-1-19
Charleston Gazette-Mail page 5A (Reprint from Register-Herald, Beckley)
(W) e are impressed with the attention and interest in education if for no other reason than it seems to have become this state’s single most important concern – because it has been neglected for so longWith an estimated 700 classrooms in the state lacking qualified teachers, many in basic math, successive annual pay hikes totaling 10 percent over two years should help attract and retain highly qualified teachers…Beyond the salary adjustments, our teachers could certainly use the help. In National Assessment of Educational Progress testing last year, 35 percent of the state’s fourth graders were proficient in mathematics and 32 percent proficient in reading. Eighth graders checked in at 28 percent proficient at reading and 24 percent proficient in math. Read another way, the great majority of children – up to three of every four students – is not grade-level proficient in reading and math. That is alarming…We know there are too many principals who lack the credentials and experience to shape curriculum let alone plan an academic calendar. We also know that about a quarter of West Virginia public and private high school students who graduated in 2017 and enrolled in the state’s public colleges were required to enroll in remedial education classes. (Red font in the article was added.) Karl’s comment: This IS alarming, AND this has went on for years AND it is NOT going to change. Just check the FACTs in these WV News pages. (Note: I dispute the claim that a quarter of private school graduates need remedial college classes.)

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