Mobilize the working class behind striking Oklahoma educators!

 

Build rank-and-file committees to unite with teachers in Arizona and Kentucky!

Mobilize the working class behind striking Oklahoma educators!

By
Socialist Equality Party

31 March 2018

Tens of thousands of striking Oklahoma teachers and school employees are converging in the state capital Monday to demand higher wages and increased school funding. They have rejected the bipartisan bill passed Thursday night that includes an insulting $6,000 one-off pay increase and a small increase in school funding that will not make a dent in the billions of dollars that have been cut from education over the past decade.

The statewide strike in Oklahoma is part of an expanding wave of struggles by educators across the United States and internationally. On Friday, teachers in Kentucky rejected the union’s proposal that they do nothing in the face of severe cuts to pensions, organizing wildcat sickouts and closing schools in 29 counties. Thousands will demonstrate in Frankfort today, and demands are growing for a strike.

Educators in Arizona, where median pay is last in the nation, are calling for a statewide strike following a demonstration last Wednesday for wage and school funding increases. The movement of teachers, which erupted with the nine-day walkout in West Virginia last month, has also spread to Colorado, New Jersey and other states, plus the US territory of Puerto Rico.

The National Education Association (NEA) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) are opposed to an extended strike in Oklahoma, which would galvanize opposition throughout the country. The unions are seeking to send teachers back to work after a one-day strike that will resolve nothing. They want to turn teachers’ energies toward the dead end of lobbying and pressuring the bought-and-paid-for…

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