Oklahoma's teachers keep strike going for fourth day

Oklahoma's teachers keep strike going for fourth day

Republicans control Oklahoma's legislature.

Noting that her colleagues have stretched their paychecks to buy students the shoes or eyeglasses they otherwise could not afford, Benge says, "I cannot in good conscience sit and not do anything. That's more important than any money", says Millar.

Earlier this week, teachers in Kentucky staged a huge rally at their state capitol in Frankfort.

Along with the impassioned protests at the Capitol, the fight for funding has inspired at least one veteran teacher to run for office-against state Rep. Kevin McDugle, one of the legislators who voted against sufficient funding and criticized education supporters for protesting.

Mary Fallin, R, is under siege after she compared striking teachers converging on the state Capitol to rally for education funding to "a teenage kid that wants a better auto".

A new poll released by the Oklahoma Education Association showed that 93% of Oklahomans think Fallin hasn't done enough to fund education.

The exasperation is overtaking Oklahoma, and similar teacher strikes have taken place in Kentucky, Arizona, and other USA states were teachers are underpaid.

Kentucky teachers are also objecting to new limits on the state's underfunded public employee pension system. Meanwhile, the state is contending with a dire teacher shortage, and has to grant a growing number of emergency certifications, filling classrooms with teachers who don't meet the normal training requirements.

Mr Bowman earns slightly over US$50,000 a year for teaching social studies at a high school in Mesa, Arizona. More than 100 school districts in Oklahoma will remain shuttered on Thursday.

Teachers from across Oklahoma walked off the job for a third consecutive day on Wednesday, repeating their demands for higher pay and more spending on education.

Online Gambling in the USA: Progress or Stalemate?
With one major exception: online gambling, a global industry triggered by the innovative work of two Canadian youngsters. The current legal status of online casinos and poker rooms in the US is - for lack of a better word - controversial.

The walkouts follow a two-week job action in West Virginia that prompted lawmakers to raise teachers' pay.

Oklahoma Education Association President Alicia Priest, whose organization spearheaded this week's walkout and rally, said the House vote signaled major progress in providing proper funding for Oklahoma schools. Oklahoma teacher Alberto Morejon wrote Thursday morning in Oklahoma Teacher Walkout - The Time Is Now! Student speakers described tattered textbooks, malfunctioning computers and broken classroom furnishings and urged lawmakers to increase spending on their education. "This is about funding our schools for our students". Unless lawmakers are able to come up with some dramatic new revenues for public schools on Friday, she'll be back first thing Monday, even if her district reopens, she said. They also want a $5,000 increase for support staff. Similar protests were held in Phoenix, Mesa and Gilbert.

Last week, about 2,500 teachers rallied at the Arizona state Capitol demanding a 20 percent raise. Republican Gov. Doug Ducey has said he is sticking to a 1 percent increase.

In 2016, Oklahoma ranked 49th in teacher pay.

Marchers plan to hike about six hours to Kellyville High School about 18 miles (30 kilometers) away.

Those funds would be in addition to a law signed last week by Gov. Mary Fallin that gives each teacher a $6,100 raise and commits $33 million to school textbooks and $18 million to additional school funding.

The protesters in Oklahoma were galvanized by a strike in West Virginia, which resulted in a five percent wage increase.

The Republican majority's leadership says Senate Bill 1086 won't be heard because the GOP caucus agreed to raise the gross production tax on horizontal oil and gas wells instead, but Democrats continues to press the issue.

Ms Vargas, who teaches second grade in Tulsa, joined thousands of Oklahoma teachers who jammed the state Capitol in Oklahoma City this week.

When an Oklahoma teacher revealed what the chairs in her classroom look like, she couldn't imagine how far one photo could go.