Public schools are a critical part of the economy. A well-educated workforce makes a state marketable to businesses, and it just makes good sense. My mother is a public-school employee, my stepmother is a teacher, and two of my cousins are teachers—all in Putnam County. I understand the importance of having a properly funded system of public education. I was educated in West Virginia public schools from kindergarten through graduate school. We cannot continue cuts to education and hope to succeed. In fact, we need more money in the system for compensation raises and improved programs. I will make education a priority.