Update: West Virginia Schools Closing Monday as Strike Set to Enter 12th Day

Photo by Scott McCloskey Stefanie Cirilli, a special education teacher at Elm Grove Elementary School, stands with almost a dozen other teachers near the intersection of Kruger Street and National Road in Elm Grove Thursday.

WHEELING — With a conference committee of House and Senate leaders reportedly choosing not to meet today to work out an agreement on a proposed pay raise of either 5 percent or 4 percent, schools statewide wasted no time this afternoon in cancelling classes for Monday — the 12th day of a statewide teacher strike that will surpass the 11-day 1990 strike.

Monday will mark the eighth day of school to be canceled due to the strike, which began Feb. 22 over pay, benefits, teacher seniority issues and what was known as the “paycheck protection act” that would have required teachers and service personnel to reauthorize each year union dues to be taken from their checks. The state has agreed to shore up funding to the Public Employees Insurance Agency, and now it’s come down to whether teachers, service personnel and state troopers will get a 5 percent pay raise, as passed by the House of Delegates, or all state workers will instead get a 4 percent raise, which passed the Senate.

Both the House and the Senate are set to reconvene at 11 a.m. Monday.