Oklahoma and Kentucky teachers are walking off the job Monday and holding rallies at their state capitols to pressure lawmakers. Oklahoma and Kentucky teachers plan to walk out in what could be huge rallies:
Inspired by the West Virginia strike in which teachers demanded and got a pay raise from state leaders, a wave of other states, including Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona, are taking similar action.
Educators are organizing and publicly pressuring state lawmakers over issues such as education funding, teacher salaries and pension reform.
Teachers in Oklahoma are rallying for more education funding and salaries, and those in Kentucky will be marching over a controversial pension bill and the state budget.
Arizona’s #RedForEd will be back at the state capitol on Wednesday. Arizona’s education funding shortages are the direct result of annual GOP tax cuts since 1992 that produced a structural revenue deficit. Why is Arizona teacher pay so low? Blame those tax cuts
Media coverage of possible teacher strikes in Arizona and Oklahoma, following one in West Virginia, has often overlooked an important contributing factor in those states: Excessive state tax cuts that have shrunk state revenues and thereby made it harder for states to devote adequate resources to education.
Reductions in state education funding largely due to tax cuts have limited pay and other resources for teachers.
And both Arizona and Oklahoma have supermajority requirements to raise revenue — the “Two-Thirds for Taxes Amendment,” Prop. 108 (1992) in Arizona — which tend to lock in tax cuts once they’ve been enacted and make it difficult for these states to address shortfalls in education funding.