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State taking names of teachers who called in sick to protest

A group of the several hundred teachers gathered to protest perceived attacks on public education at the Capitol, in Frankfort, Ky, Tuesday, March 12, 2019. (AP Photo/Bryan Woolston)

FRANKFORT, Ky. — The Kentucky Department of Education wants the names of every teacher who has called in sick, forcing hundreds of schools to close across the state.

Kentucky’s largest school district closed Thursday for the sixth time in two weeks as teachers continued to protest at the state capitol. The department sent a letter to 10 school districts on Thursday asking them for teachers’ names and any affidavits or doctor’s notes.

Education Commissioner Wayne Lewis said the department takes the closing of schools “very seriously.” A news release from the department says state officials will review the information and report findings to the state Board of Education.

Jefferson County Teachers Association President Brent McKim said the union would represent any member who faces a disciplinary action.

Adam Beam, The Associated Press