Teachers to rally over pay, benefits in West Virginia

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — Teachers from at least three West Virginia counties are planning to rally at the state Capitol ahead of a Senate vote on a statewide pay increase for them.

Public schools are closed Friday in Logan, Mingo and Wyoming counties, and media outlets report teachers in those counties plan to flock to Charleston seeking pay raises and better health benefits.

A Senate vote is scheduled Friday on a bill to give teachers pay raises of about $400 annually over four years. Gov. Jim Justice had planned to address what his office called public education issues before the Senate convened, but that event was canceled.

According to the National Education Association, West Virginia teachers earn an average salary of $45,622, which ranks 48th among the states.

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