Date of Award


Degree Name

Educational Leadership


College of Education

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Barbara Nicholson, Committee Chairperson

Second Advisor

Dr. Eugenia Damron

Third Advisor

Dr. Ron Childress

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Edna Meisel


In 2018, the United States saw an influx of teacher strikes which were largely propagated by red-state legislation. Then and now, teachers are trying to gain a voice in educational legislation despite corporate and political strongholds on legislators. As a last measure to gain access to the policymaking process, teachers strike. When teachers strike, it becomes a social issue which puts pressure on families, the economy, and legislation. The purpose of this non-experimental, descriptive study was to examine the perceptions of teachers who participated in the 2018 and 2019 West Virginia teachers’ strikes as they relate to their interactions with the Legislature and their ability to participate in shared leadership in the education reform arena. Using a web-based survey, data showed the primary reasons teachers in the sample felt compelled to strike were due to benefits, professional dignity and respect, and the lack of input into education bills. Data also found that over two-thirds of the sample indicated they felt as though their input was not heard during the legislative sessions. Exploring the extent to which teachers perceive legislative actions as provocation to strike may provide better understanding about what legislative actions spur the most strike motivation. Identifying the areas where teachers feel included or excluded in educational decision-making as well as the extent legislative practices act as strike motivators, may allow policymakers the insights needed to change their leadership practices to adopt a shared-leadership model between legislators and teachers which would allow teachers to be active, equal, and valued entities in the state’s educational decision-making process.


Strikes and lockouts -- Teachers -- West Virginia.

Teachers' unions -- West Virginia.

Public schools -- West Virginia.

Collective bargaining -- Teachers -- West Virginia.

Labor movement -- West Virginia.