Teachers protest force school closings in 2 USA states
03 April, 2018, 04:43 | Author: Sherri Guerrero
Many Arizona teachers wore red clothes to school Monday in solidarity with protests in Oklahoma and Kentucky, said Joe Thomas, president of the Arizona Education Association.
Jennifer Ellis, a science teacher at Mannford High School, wore a Tyrannosaurus rex costume to the protest and carried a sign that read "Extinct: T. Rex, Endangered: Teachers".
By Monday, at least 25 Kentucky school districts closed due to the walkout at the state Capitol.
She and her colleagues are at odds with their district administrators over a possible work stoppage on Tuesday and beyond.
Thousands of teachers are ready to visit the Oklahoma capitol for several days in their push for increased education funding.
The Republican-dominated legislature says the pension reform bill was crafted to help the state cover a $41 billion shortfall in pension costs over the next 30 years.
Educators met at KEA headquarters at 8 a.m. with plans to march to the Capitol at 9 a.m. for the 10 a.m. rally. "But I do think there can be some set plans: This is where we're going, this is how we're getting there". They held signs and prepared to raise their voices as lawmakers returned to the Capitol to possibly vote on new two-year state budget. Whatever the decision, the Ponca City Public Schools Administration and Board of Education definitely support our teachers.
"The worst I've seen is 40 special ed students in one classroom", said Jennifer Thornton, a third grade teacher from Tulsa, Oklahoma.
"When you enjoy, you learn more".
Kingston and Atoka public schools also remained open.
It wasn't just teachers who surrounded the state house. But she said what the country's experiencing now is "a pattern of heightened participation by women of all ages, in all occupations and on all kinds of issues". Wade was flanked by her son, Landon May, a seventh-grader at Yukon Public School.
"Their success has shown us that collective activity can work", Kentucky teacher Corey Sayre said of the West Virginia walkout.
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Oklahoma And Kentucky Teachers Go On Strike, Demanding More Education Funding Thousands of Oklahoma teachers did not go to school Monday.
In Frankfort, Kentucky, teachers and supporters came together Monday morning - marching to the state capitol to protest a controversial bil that passed the state legislature last week.
Amanda Carter, a middle school teacher from Rowan County, says the plan doesn't provide the same security as the conventional defined-benefit pensions now received by teachers.
In Oklahoma, with the third-lowest teacher salaries among the 50 USA states, the protesters said funding concessions made by state lawmakers last week were not big enough to improve education there. Wyandotte is shut down until Thursday, he said.
Joe Dorman, a former gubernatorial candidate who is now executive director of the Institute for Child Advocacy, had his organization registering teachers to vote on the fourth floor of the Capitol. "I commend my teachers for the path they chose".
"We have no choice but to be here", Jeffrey Peeno, a Kenton County art teacher, said. Teachers, majority clad in red (as part of the grassroots Wear Red for Ed campaign), later marched to the Capitol itself, filling up the rotunda outside legislative chambers and spilling out the front doors and down the steps. However, teachers said not enough was done to reverse decades of school funding cuts, which have totaled around $200 million since 2008. But it didn't go far enough, she said.
"It's not about teacher pay raises".
"It's nearly like the oil and gas people have more say than the people that actually voted (lawmakers) in", Alberto Morejon says as we stroll his campus in Stillwater.
And why did that paper cutter look so appealing?
"Stop the war on public education!"
First-year teacher Diane Young said she's already used to spending her own money on classroom supplies. "We we're here in 2014 and 2015 and it didn't make a difference, not one".
"Our kids are the future, and if we don't do something about what's going on right now in Frankfort, then we could potentially lose programs that will impact our kids' futures, said Angela Turnnick, Holmes High School assistant principal".
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