W.Va. gov would veto education bill if passed by lawmakers

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice says he would veto a comprehensive education bill now under consideration in the Legislature.

Justice said at a news conference Tuesday that lawmakers should instead consider passing his original intent of giving teachers and other state employees a 5 percent pay raise without the multiple facets of the bill now before the Republican-led Senate.

The bill has upset teachers’ unions and other groups. Among other things, it would create public charter schools, increase elementary school class sizes in public schools, establish savings accounts for families to pay for private school and require teachers to sign off annually on union dues. Some call the bill payback for last year’s teachers’ strike.

Senate President Mitch Carmichael says the current bill would improve outcomes for West Virginia students.

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