Huffington Post reports that teachers are on strike across the state for the first time in 28 years because teachers are fleeing the state for better pay, better healthcare, and better working conditions.

“In interviews, school employees who traveled from across the state to Charleston said the fight was about much more than their paychecks. West Virginia is one of the few U.S. states with a falling population. As the state grapples with a severe teacher shortage, many educators worry their younger peers will continue to flee for greener pastures, with long-term consequences for successive generations of students.

“A series of business tax cuts have left the state with little money to give public servants who’ve been waiting for meaningful raises. West Virginia now ranks 48th out of 50 states and the District of Columbia in teacher pay, and it was one of just five states to see average teacher pay go down in 2016, according to the National Education Association. Of West Virginia’s 55 counties, more than half border a state with better teacher pay. And the state was trying to fill 700 vacant positions as of last spring.”

Evidently the state government doesn’t care enough about education to pay its teachers a decent wage.