Oklahoma teacher strike to extend a 7th day

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Inman also tried to get representatives to hear a bill for a 4 percent cost-of-living adjustment for retired teachers, close to what teachers have requested, but representatives would not take it up.

The superintendent of Noble Public Schools, Frank Solomon, said that the speech and drama programs at his high schools had to be cut.

Just a week ago, two dozen educators at Desert Ridge High School in Mesa gathered before school to wave signs as parents dropped their kids off.

They are demanding a pay rise of over £7,000 a year, more money for support workers, and over £140 million in extra funding for schools on top of this. Brandy Whitmire, NSU graduate and first-year teacher, stood alongside fellow colleagues at the Capitol last week and expressed her frustrations with a sign that read, "Teaching made your job possible".

Derek Harris, a co-founder of Arizona Educators United, took to Facebook Live on Monday night to share the news that a date was about to be set for a long-term walkout.

The state's teachers are among the lowest-paid in the nation. Average salaries in 2017 were actually $8,000-9,000 less than 1990 salaries, when adjusted for inflation. "I sat in a board meeting past year in Texas where the board approved starting teacher pay of over $51,000, that is $20,000 more than the same teacher would make in Oklahoma".

The teachers' rebellion was initiated and has been driven by rank-and-file teachers, both unionized and nonunion, who have used social media to organize after years of betrayals by the unions.


But teachers are still angry and distrustful of state legislators, and they have plenty of momentum heading into day eight of the strike. He said it's been a new challenge to balance work and activism. "It's a weird balance". But after more than a decade of cutting taxes for the wealthy while education is underfunded, it's unclear what will be enough for teachers to end this strike. Nationally, teachers are still struggling to recover from the recession.

The educators and state government are at odds over salaries and funding.

"It looks like we're going to hit those numbers shortly here", he said before heading to school early Tuesday.

"If the other schools are struggling to get the numbers, that's gonna really hurt what we have in the blood banks", Mr. Estabrook told KTUL. Teachers in Kentucky organized sickouts last week and rallied at the state capitol in Frankfort and the eastern coal country town of Pikeville against deep attacks on their pensions and retiree health benefits.

Ducey is sticking with his plan to slowly boost school funding, promising a 1-percent teacher raise and $100 million in funding for districts this year as a start to restoring almost $400 million in cuts. "Whether the union says no or yes, we'll still be out here". "I got emergency certified to teach this year and it has been awesome". "So there is a disconnect between the possible and what they are saying", said Alicia Priest, the president of the Oklahoma Education Association.

Organizers of the Arizona teacher movement, like Karvelis, don't think the governor's actions match his words. "For that reason, I personally think they need to continue to force the legislature to do more".

Flanked by dozens of other teachers and supporters, Hoxie embarked on the final 16-mile stretch of the march Tuesday morning - with massive blisters on his feet.

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