A strike by Oklahoma educators demanding more school funding entered a 10th day on Wednesday, as the state's Republican leaders warned they plan no further increases after approving $450 million in new revenue to boost teacher pay.
A teacher and her husband drove to the police department in Clinton, Oklahoma, on Saturday to make a startling confession, according to the state's bureau of investigation. Schools in the state's largest cities, Oklahoma City and Tulsa, were shut on Tuesday and planned to close on Wednesday.
While the states experiencing protests are among the most severely affected - Reuters notes that they "have some of the lowest per-student spending in the country" - the effects of reduced public revenues and spending can be seen in national data as well. Arizona teachers are organizing a statewide walkout, following demonstrations in West Virginia and Kentucky.
Lawmakers on Monday discussed a bill that would remove a tax exemption on capital gains and bring in about $100 million.
Oklahoma teachers press lawmakers for tax plan to end strike
The agency says Hoffman also told investigators she had sex with the boy after taking him and other students to the state Capitol last week to participate in demonstrations in which thousands have protested seeking more state money for education.
Opponents of the Oklahoma tax hikes said lawmakers could bolster education spending by cutting bureaucracy and waste rather than raising taxes.
The nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities said Oklahoma's inflation-adjusted per student funding fell by 28.2 percent between 2008 and 2018, the biggest reduction of any state. "And both Arizona and Oklahoma have supermajority requirements to raise revenue, which tend to lock in tax cuts once they've been enacted and make it hard for these states to address shortfalls in education funding".
Teachers want a $10,000 raise over three years.