Oklahoma Teachers End Walkout After Winning Raises and Additional Funding

Thursday April 12, 2018
By DANA GOLDSTEIN and ELIZABETH DIAS, NEW YORK TIMES

Saying it had achieved all that it could with a walkout, Oklahoma’s largest teachers’ union on Thursday called for educators to return to the classroom and to shift their efforts to supporting candidates in the fall elections who favor increased education spending.

At a news conference, Alicia Priest, president of the Oklahoma Education Association, characterized the nine-day walkout as “a victory for teachers,” even as it fell short of its goals.

In a deep-red state that has pursued tax and service cuts for years, teachers won a raise of about $6,000, depending on experience, while members of schools’ support staff will see a raise of $1,250.

But the biggest pieces of legislation passed before the walkout, not during it, and Ms. Priest acknowledged that many of the protesters’ demands for more schools funding would not be met, because, she said, Republicans in the State Senate would not consider additional revenue sources.

“We got here by electing the wrong people to office,” Ms. Priest said. “We have the opportunity to make our voices heard at the ballot box.”

Read the full story from The New York Times

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