Democracy Now! (4/4/18)
Schools across Oklahoma are closed today for a third day as teachers continue their strike demanding more funding for education and increased pay. Oklahoma’s public education budget has been slashed more than any other state since the start of the recession in 2008, and its teachers are among the lowest paid in the nation. Scores of teachers are planning to begin a 123-mile protest march today from Tulsa to Oklahoma City. Meanwhile, thousands of teachers continue to protest in Kentucky, demanding a reversal to a provision in a recently passed bill about sewage treatment that gutted their pension benefits.
On Monday, every school in the state was closed either due to spring break or in anticipation of a massive rally in the capital of Frankfort, where teachers filled the rotunda of the Kentucky state Capitol, chanting “Fund our schools!” This year’s wave of teacher rebellions began in West Virginia, where teachers won a 5 percent pay raise after a historic strike.
We speak to four guests: Oklahoma teacher Andrea Thomas, Kentucky state lawmaker Attica Scott, retired Kentucky teacher Mickey McCoy and labor journalist Mike Elk.