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Washington lawmakers met Tuesday to discuss docking teacher pay during strikes and walk-outs.

This comes the same day hundreds of teachers walked out classrooms to protest a lack of education funding.

A state Senate committee held a hearing for a bill that would prevent striking teachers from collecting salary and benefits when they aren’t at work.

Senator Tim Sheldon, a Democrat who caucuses with the Republicans, is the prime sponsor.He says teachers shouldn’t get paid when they aren’t at work.

Teachers in Vancouver Protest State School Funding

May 13, 2015

Many teachers in Southwest Washington took the day off Wednesday to protest state lawmakers' funding of K-12 education.

Seattle Teachers Join Walkouts

May 5, 2015

Seattle Public School educators will stage a one-day walkout on May 19th.

The Seattle Education Association is the latest of 29 teacher's unions across the state that has voted to participate in walkouts.  It's an appeal to lawmakers for more money and smaller class sizes.

Jonathan Knapp is president of the Seattle Education Association.

He says it's time for legislators to act.

Lawmakers in Olympia are in a special session to finalize the Washington state budget. Some teachers’ unions have decided to walk out for a day to appeal for more money in the K-12 budget.

AP Images

So far teachers in more than two-dozen districts around Washington state – have voted to hold one-day walkouts.

The rolling, one-day strikes began around the state last month.

Rich Wood is a spokesman with the Washington Education Association. He says they’re protesting the current budget proposals state lawmakers are debating in Olympia.

Idaho Panel Introduces Long-Awaited Teacher Pay Plan

Mar 4, 2015

A plan to give Idaho teachers significant raises over five years has finally taken shape in the Idaho legislature.

Washington and Oregon have been given one year to change the way they evaluate teachers or risk losing millions in federal education funding.

OLYMPIA, Wash. – It’s an idea that’s catching on around the country: give school principals the power to reject a teacher assigned to their building. Giving principals veto power has already passed the Washington Senate. But at a public hearing in the House Friday the idea faced opposition – and not just from teachers.

In the education documentary “Waiting For Superman” they talk about the dance of the lemons.

Waiting For Superman: “Principals have their lemons. These are teachers who are chronically bad: they know it, the other teachers know it …”

Teacher morale is low throughout Idaho. And school administrators have serious concerns about recruiting and retaining teachers. As Adam Cotterell reports, those are some of the findings from a new study presented to lawmakers Tuesday.

Idaho teachers who earned bonuses last year will still receive their checks, even though voters overturned performance pay in Idaho. The state attorney general's office made the call in a legal opinion released Monday. Jessica Robinson explains why it got so complicated.

A state panel will vote Thursday on Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber’s choice to oversee a dramatic shift in the way the state runs public education. The governor selected Rudy Crew after a nationwide search. Crew is the former head of public school districts in New York, Miami, Tacoma and elsewhere. The head of Oregon's largest teacher's union thinks it's a good choice.

Washington House of Representatives

Washington teachers are woefully underpaid. That’s the conclusion of a draft legislative task force report. Now a key Washington state lawmaker says teachers and other school employees deserve at least a cost of living pay raise next year.

Twelve years ago, Washington voters approved Initiative 732. It requires annual pay increases for K-12 employees. The initiative didn’t come with any funding. In recent years, because of the Great Recession the legislature has suspended those pay raises. But now state revenues are starting to recover. House Ways and Means Chairman Ross Hunter says the state should make it a priority to ensure teacher pay keeps up with inflation.

Photo credit: Wikimedia user Korribot / Wikimedia Commons

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Teachers and Principals in Washington are going to get graded on a new four-tier evaluation system. That’s under a new law signed by Governor Chris Gregoire Thursday. It’ll judge teachers as unsatisfactory, basic, proficient or distinguished. The new rankings will replace the current pass/fail format. The change is estimated to cost $5.3 million , but Gregoire says it’s necessary.

Another Believer / Wikimedia Commons

University of Oregon faculty members are collecting signatures in an effort to establish a union. It would be comprised of all full and part time professors and instructors -- about 2,000 members. KLCC's Rachael McDonald has more.

The group United Academics of the University of Oregon has been gathering support for the union effort this month. But it's a process that began in the fall according to Michael Dreiling, an Associate Professor of Sociology.