The recent #RedForEd strikes have highlighted a duality that Black women educators have long addressed–that their interests as public employees are connected to their concerns for the communities they serve.

The West Virginia teachers’ strike builds upon a longer movement that has primarily been led by women in Appalachia, one staked on expanding working people’s access to political power and equalizing public services.

The spring 2018 teacher strikes in Republican-dominated states were an unprecedented, collective response of a mostly female workforce against a decades-long assault on public education.