Businesses support teachers through savings

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – Several businesses around the state are stepping up in support of teachers, the day after the general assembly’s pension vote.

Many restaurants around the state are giving them discounts Friday.

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“We’re helping them make their statement,” said Mary Stewart, a waitress at Josie’s in Georgetown. “We want them to be heard.”

At Josie’s, teachers were invited in and given 50 percent off their meals. Employees say this is all about showing teachers they care, and giving their support.

“They offer so much to our community, and all around the world,” said Stewart. “Without them, we would be nowhere.”

At Willie’s Locally Known in Lexington, teachers were given free lunch as a ‘thank you.’

“They’ve shaped every single one of us,” said Willie’s owner Wilson Sebastian. “They’re absolutely crucial to our society and what we have going on and I feel their too often under appreciated.”

Under appreciated is the way several teachers describe the way they feel, saying this pension plan is ruining the job they love.

“It is a devastation to the education field,” said Katie Baber, a teacher at Lansdowne Elementary. “It not only touches our teachers, but it touches our students and our parents.”

“It’s kind of disheartening just to see, because I have a lot of friends who are studying to be teachers as well, and they’re getting kind of discouraged and wondering whether they should go into the profession or not, and i know that they would be great teachers.” said Josh Price, a teacher at Tates Creek High School.

Several teachers say they hope the statements they’re making, and what the community is doing in support, will have an impact in Frankfort.

“I think that shows our governor that the people stand behind us, and what we’re feeling, and what we’re saying is not idiotic, and we’re not hashtag thug life,” said Kiauna Coleman, a teacher at Coventry Oak Elementary. “We really are trying to make a living and live in Lexington, Georgetown and surrounding communities, and the people believe in what we’re doing in the classroom with our students.”