My goodness, one would think that funding public education fully is a no-brainer. I have seen so many charts and bits of information floating around on social media that makes this even more crucial now. More students in schools, causing classrooms to bust at the seams. More families relying on the school to provide not only academic nourishment but physical nourishment as well because of the increasing poverty of our state. Oklahoma is still ranked alongside 9 other states for having the highest poverty levels in the country. Check out article here. Poverty in Oklahoma
Oklahoma teachers acknowledge what a student’s needs are everyday and these needs are not being met. Teachers are saying they aren’t enough to supplement the student’s learning environment anymore. They are done waiting for results, they want the need in this state to be seen and felt. If we do not see the reasons these teachers are standing out in the cold each day as they wait to speak to lawmakers, then you honestly haven’t looked into the problem that has been plaguing our schools for too long.
I am obviously biased as I have been in the classroom for many years, but this is about more than our salary. It is about the profession and saying to our students that their state cares about them and the promise of a brighter future. I know that for me this fight is about the role of teacher should not be disrespected, we respect our students, our community and our state by providing more than an education. We provide care and inspiration to each and every class that walks through our door. I am ecstatic that teachers will not be ignored this week. Everyone is watching! Keep it up your courage and strength are commendable. I know that our schools were not allowed to walk at the capital except for one day this week. They are taking the state tests that are required to hold teachers accountable for doing their job. The tests never match up to the framework we are given to construct our objectives for the year. I pray for these teachers in my town and all over our state. I pray for those in other states who are saying that our kids are worth more. Who do they expect to work at schools with children if not those who truly care. Step back a moment representatives and find the solution, as there is a problem. The problem is not that the teachers “are like teenagers asking for a better car” ~ Ok Governor, Mary Fallin. The problem is neglect of taxpayer monies and monies designated for education funding being unaccounted for.
I became a teacher for several reasons, and most of my friends became an educator for similar reasons. I hope that educators can withstand the wait, I know they are patient enough… we have already been waiting for changes for over a decade.