Wyandotte Teachers Ready for Another Week In Oklahoma City
11 April 2018, 11:24 | Colleen Roy
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Broeffle Musgrove is one of only a few teachers on the march who participated in the last statewide strike in Oklahoma, back in 1990. With demands for statewide strikes spreading from Kentucky, Arizona and SC to Florida, Iowa and Texas, the unions have warned teachers that strikes are illegal and would lead to "harsh consequences".
Leaders of Oklahoma's largest teacher's union have said protests will continue unless lawmakers approve a repeal of a capital gains tax exemption and the governor vetoes a repeal of a proposed lodging tax.
Jeremiah Smith, a physical science teacher and track coach at Midwest City High School, says it might have put more pressure on lawmakers if they had canceled the meet, but that wouldn't benefit the students.
"We've always shown a roadmap forward, and the Legislature has had all the opportunities to make the votes and pass the funding", Priest said.
State lawmakers have approved almost $450 million in new taxes and other revenues to help fund teachers' raise pay and boost other education spending since the walkout began on April 2, but the union is pushing for more action to raise overall spending by $600 million each year.
Val expressed the determination of rank-and-file teachers to continue the strike for their demands of wage and school funding increases.
Fallin recently approved a $6,100 pay raise for teachers, but Oklahoma teachers said this is not enough. Arizona and Kentucky teachers have voiced their frustrations regarding teachers' salary and education underfunding.
"She is for school privatization", Val said of DeVos. They have written letters and made calls to legislators to avoid a walkout.
"As teachers, our nature is the best for our students", Leah Hedger, an Edmond teacher, told News 4 during the Monday morning march to the state capitol.
"We plan these things about a year in advance".
Dozens of Oklahoma school districts are closed for the fifth straight day today, in a fight over education funding.
Fallin has faced the brunt of criticism from teachers, many of whom blame the term-limited governor for supporting tax cuts and generous state subsidies for businesses that have led to declines in state funding for schools and other state services.
State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister says she hopes the extension will prevent any penalties or loss of funding from the federal government, which mandates that 95 percent of students take the tests.
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