LITTLE ROCK, Ark – Teachers in Little Rock say they’re disheartened pay raises were not discussed in this week’s special session.
“Shame on every legislator that chose to end that session early,” said Central High School Teacher Roy Vaughn.
In the past week, Democrats have voiced their plans to extend the session and discuss two bills covering raises and bonuses for teachers in the state.
At the sound of the gavel, the session ended Friday morning, without any talk of teacher pay.
“This is all about priority,” said State Senator Keith Ingram (D) in an interview with our station earlier this week. “The Republicans’ priority was tax cuts, [and] our priority was teacher salary raises. The sad truth of all of this is that we can do all of it.”
Those against pay raises being discussed say they wanted more time to look the proposals over.
“A lot of the work on all of those issues is already taking place and we’re going to be ready to go when we get back in January,” said State Senator Jonathan Dismang (R).
A decision made in the people’s house has those outside up in arms.
“School starts literally in a few days,” said Vaughn. “Imagine teachers say just wait until January and we will start teaching. That doesn’t make good sense.”
Vaughn says he has fears teachers will walk, leaving behind a business they say they’re tired of waiting for.
“If educators chose to wait like that, educators would be without a job,” said Vaughn.