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Local teachers rally ahead of walkout

Local teachers rally ahead of walkout

"This is a very historic moment in Oklahoma's time", Fallin said of funding measures that included the pay boost. Especially now that Arizona is also joining the fight, with teachers demanding a 20 percent teacher pay hike.

Schulz said that's enough to give teachers sizable raises and give raises to state workers.

Oklahoma ranks 47th in the nation in public school revenue per student, almost $3,000 below the national average, while its average teacher salary of $45,276 ranks 49th, according to the most recent statistics from the National Education Association (NEA).

Steven Rhoden, a paraprofessional in special education at an elementary school in Tulsa, told the World Socialist Web Site that teachers are not happy with the deal, and paraprofessionals and support staff would get little if anything. Charitable contributions and medical expenses are not capped. While the raise passed by the legislature and signed into law earlier this week is seen as a "great start" by teachers, the broader issue of education funding was not addressed to the satisfaction of teachers.

The package increases the gross production tax charged to oil and gas drillers to 5 percent on all wells. Ky. school system shouts at the Kentucky Senate chamber in protest of Kentucky Senate Bill 1, a bill that proposes changes to the state funded pension system for teachers, March 9, 2018, in Frankfort, Ky.

But now, observers note that the teacher unions seem fractured and unsure of the best path forward ahead of their threatened walkout Monday.

"Without a teacher pay raise, an already devastating situation will only worsen, with children being the ultimate victims", Priest said.

The state's largest teacher's union said Thursday it still plans to force school closures despite the raises and the $447 million in tax increases funding it.

The Oklahoma Senate passed three bills that will help fund a teacher pay raise in Oklahoma.

The statewide teacher walk out is scheduled for Monday.

A hero of the anti-tax movement is criticizing Oklahoma House Republicans for approving a major tax increase and urging citizens to challenge incumbents who voted for the plan.

Many Oklahoma teachers on Facebook have called for keeping schools shut down until all their demands are met. "No matter if you're for it or against it, we all agree our kids need to be provided for and loved on and taken care of".

The average salary for Oklahoma teachers was $45,276 in 2016 - a slight decrease from 2015, according to the NEA.

The historic and successful strike in West Virginia has inspired a burgeoning uprising among austerity-weary teachers around the country. Approving tax hikes in Oklahoma is extraordinarily hard, requiring a three-fourths supermajority in both chambers. "They may be saying 'thank you".


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