Governor Signs Teacher Pay Raise Bill, Some Educators Are Still Walking Out

Oklahoma students walkout in support of teachers

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.

A new advocacy group, which opposes tax increases - Oklahoma Taxpayers Unite!, which is championed by former U.S. Sen.

Norman Superintendent Nick Migliorino told parents he will survey teachers again on Monday. But the situation in schools prompted the tax hike.

According to CNBC, Oklahoma's teachers annual salary is $42,460, the lowest in the nation.

While schools will be closed for an unknown number of days, children won't need to go hungry.

In the years that followed, lawmakers started signing national pledges against tax increases. The state's largest teachers union is organizing the walkout and rally. Lawmakers also plan to cap the amount of itemized deductions Oklahomans can claim on their taxes.

"Everything is taxes", he said. "But you know what it doesn't do?" "That's the easiest thing to do". With a population of about 6,000, Purcell has dubbed itself the "Heart of Oklahoma". J.J. Dossett, D-Owasso, who voted against the measure.

Neither he nor Cleveland responded to StateImpact's interview requests, but the legislators' staunch anti-tax positions during the education funding debate angered some of their constituents. For months, Midkiff has begged lawmakers for more financial support.

"This is a very historic day in Oklahoma", said Fallin.

They got a financial boost through House Bill 1010XX.

Montgomery is angry, too.

He says he's anxious about more than just education, though. "I think even the most hardened idealists are looking more toward future long-term funding".

Montgomery says if that means raising taxes, then so be it.

The fatal weakness of that struggle, however, was that rank-and-file teachers did not build up the necessary organizations, free from the control of the unions, to take the struggle forward and mobilize the broadest support in the working class to fight the gang-up of the two big-business parties and the powerful corporate interests behind them. "It's not enough", Priest said. "She has 75 to 80 kids and has 30 books to work with", teacher Larry Jamison said. "They've wasted a lot of money".

They plan to head to the state capital that day, alongside other teachers demanding for that change.

They say they want to walk out of classrooms across the state to pressure legislators to provide even more funding to public schools. Rural hospitals and nursing homes are closing, prison populations are at crisis levels, and state Highway Patrol officers got mileage limits past year because the state couldn't afford the gas bill.

About 125 students from Ryan High School and Junior High walked out in support of the possible teacher walkout next week. However, she said it shouldn't be much of an issue because her student teaching time is split.

"I'm all for paying teachers an additional $5,000, $10,000 - give them $20,000", he said.

He was referring to a vote in the state house to repeal a portion of the revenue package that would have added a $5 lodging fee per room to hotels and motels to generate about $44 million for 2019.

StateImpact Oklahoma is a partnership among Oklahoma's public radio stations and relies on contributions from readers and listeners to fulfill its mission of public service to Oklahoma and beyond.



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