Health Care

Oklahoma teachers walk out for second day

Kentucky teachers: We've had enough

While Kentucky teachers rank 26th in the country for teacher salaries, The Outline points out that they have one of the most poorly funded pension programs in the nation.

Oklahoma is dealing with a severe teacher shortage, and many districts have moved to four-day school weeks in order to save money.

Her comments, in response to a question from CBS correspondent Omar Villafranca, came amid a teacher walkout that has closed schools across Oklahoma for hundreds of thousands of students.

"We have found our mojo". Priest is the head of the Oklahoma Education Association, which is Oklahoma's largest teachers union.

Curry explained given the recent climate in Kentucky concerning public education, it was time to take a stand. This year's wave of teacher rebellions began in West Virginia, where teachers won a 5 percent pay raise after a historic strike. Arizona teachers are poised to strike if the state legislature does not respond to their demands for pay increases.

Meanwhile, CNN host Alisyn Camerota spoke to the head of a Kentucky teachers' union, Stephanie Winkler, as educators in the state stage massive walkouts over teacher pensions.

In Arizona, teachers held protests last week demanding more education funding.

Stormy Cole, a Stillwater, Oklahoma student displays a protest sign, during a teachers rally at the state capitol in Oklahoma. They're also anxious about cuts to education funding that they say have compromised the quality of education available to Oklahoma students.

It's extraordinarily hard for Oklahoma to bring in more revenue through tax increases, because any tax hike requires a three-fourths supermajority in both chambers of the Legislature. Unlike in strongholds for labor, such as NY or California, teachers' unions in West Virginia, Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona are barred by law from compelling workers to pay dues.

But teachers said it was not enough.

"I'm pleased to signal that this bill which delivers a considerable increase in spending to our general school strategy", Fallin said, based on FOX-25 at Oklahoma town. "They're here for resources, here for desks".

About 200 of the state's 500 school districts shut down Monday as teachers walked out, defying calls from some parents and administrators for them to be grateful about what they had already received from the state. The last three days have been important, he said, "but the most important days of this month are April 11, 12 and 13".

News 4 also spoke with House majority leader Rep. Jon Echols, R-Oklahoma City.

"What they've done in Kentucky, where it's also illegal, is use sick days to walk out of the classroom", he says.

"When I retire, will there be someone to replace me?" said Mrs. Mickelson in front of the statehouse.

Fallin said in a statement earlier this week Oklahoma can't "neglect other areas of need in the state" when considering pay increases for teachers - areas like corrections and health and human services.

According to the recent statistics from the National Education Association, Oklahoma City ranks 47th in the nation in public school revenue per student, almost $3,000 below the national average while its average teacher salary of $45,276 ranks 49th. Schools have been unable to purchase textbooks or make repairs - many students have to share tattered textbooks that are missing pages. "That's something that everybody ought to be concerned about and teachers ought to raise their voice, whether they end up walking out of the classroom or not". That legislation will pump $50 million more in increased classroom spending and fund raises for teachers and support staff.

"There's revenue out there", Priest said.

"If Oklahoma is like any other state, the pay for public workers is higher than that for private workers", Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, said in a telephone interview. "This is about funding our schools for our students".