Donate to thank the brave bus drivers, cooks, school aides, secretaries, and teachers of Putnam County and across #55United West Virginia for standing up for the future of public education in West Virginia!
-- Update: We will be closing the fundraiser at 6pm on Friday March 1
(PUTNAM COUNTY PERSONNEL: Our application form is now closed. The deadline for applications was Feb. 28 at 5pm. If you applied, we will notify you of our decision within 7 days.)
WV service personnel and teachers went on strike for a second time in two years to protect our future. They were protecting West Virginia’s education system from a wildly unpopular education overhaul bill that would drain money from the public education system to support private schools, authorize charter schools, make classroom sizes larger, and weaken school employees' ability to fight back through strikes. After last year's historic teacher's strike, this bill is a vindictive move by legislative leaders who seem determined to take revenge on our entire state's education system.
When this year’s strike was announced, 54 out of 55 WV counties closed their schools in solidarity with teachers. Putnam County’s superintendent officially kept schools open, causing school personnel in that county to lose pay and risk being penalized. But Putnam County stood in solidarity. On the first day of the strike most Putnam teachers were in the picket lines, and not one school bus departed.
On Strike Day 2, the buses remained parked and the picket lines were strong - even in downpours of rain and snow across the state.
THIS FUNDRAISER, in direct coordination with the West Virginia School Service Personnel Association, will raise funds to thank the Putnam County bus drivers and school personnel who stood up to anti-union and anti-public education forces. We have an ambitious goal to help cover the lost pay for two days of work for Putnam County service personnel who held the line. We are also communicating with and supportive of both the AFT and WVEA and will expand our goals as we are able and as needed!
Things are changing quickly. If the education omnibus bill stays live and the strike continues to impact more people around the state, this fundraiser will also support costs for other personnel around the state who are striking and/or losing pay, similar to the strike fund we ran last year . If this fund outperforms our goals, it will expand our ability to support more service personnel and teachers who held the line in 2019! We will keep you updated on that effort.
Who we are:
We are a group of West Virginia parents, community members and current/former school employees who want to do what we can to support the educators and school service personnel who serve our children every day. Last year, our strike fund raised over $330,000 and distributed it back to over 950 school employees.
The funds are being managed through Rise Up WV , a community organization based in Charleston. Rise Up WV is an unincorporated nonprofit 501(c)4 association registered in the state of WV. Every dollar raised (except for Gofundme’s administrative fee) will go directly back to striking school employees in the form of direct financial support.
Thank you for your support!
Brendan Muckian-Bates, West Virginia United steering committee member
Britt Huerta, Volunteer and Former School Personnel
Ryan Frankenberry, WV Working Families Party
Cathy Kunkel, Savanna Lyons, Ric MacDowell, and Paul Dalzell, Rise Up WV
Fundraising team: WV School Service Personnel Strike Fund (2)