Berkeley County teachers rejoice over strike ending

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — Soon after the news that the statewide teacher strike had ended, Berkeley County Schools announced that classes are set to resume tomorrow morning.

Gov. Jim Justice signed a deal Tuesday to provide all public employees with a 5 percent raise.

Martinsburg High School Principal Trent Sherman said the staff will be welcoming back students with wide open arms.

“We’re going to be out in the halls and we’re going to be welcoming kids and trying to make them feel welcomed and thank them for their patience,” he said. “It’s going to be a very welcoming environment and a celebratory environment.”

Berkeley County Schools Superintendent Manny Arvon said during a Monday school board meeting that they will explore all options in terms of making up the school days lost.

News of the end of the statewide teacher strike spread throughout Berkeley County after the announcement from the state capital.

Many Berkeley County Schools teachers and administrators met with students at the Dairy Queen on Winchester Avenue, where they were receiving meals while schools were closed. More than 200 students received meals last week at the restaurant.

The announcement from Berkeley County Schools that said classes would be resuming Wednesday resulted in celebration and cheers. Shelly Eldridge, a teacher at Marlow Elementary School, praised the school board for their support throughout the work stoppage and expressed excitement over returning to school Wednesday.

“Our communities stayed together. No county turned down another county. We were 55 unified and 55 strong,” she said. “I can not wait to see my kids. I can not wait to see them. I’m so excited.”

Aiden, a sixth grader at Spring Mills Middle School, had mixed emotions over the strike ending.

“I’m excited because I get to see my friends but I’m not excited because it’s school and not every kid likes school,” he said.

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