Could Louisiana Teachers be the Next to Strike?
With educators on strike for higher pay in Oklahoma and Kentucky, every concerned parent in the US has got to be wondering - are we next?
Teachers in Oklahoma walked out in an effort to acquire a $10,000 per year raise for educators and a $5,000 per year raise for support staff. They are asking that the raises be applied in stages of the next 3 years. To the State of Oklahoma's credit, they did approve a raise for teachers, but it was only for $6,100 more per year. For educators willing to walk out for what they believe in, it simply wasn't enough - so now we are in day 2 of a teacher's strike in Oklahoma.
At the center of this controversy is how Oklahoma educator salaries measure up against the rest of the country. A study from the National Education Association conducted in 2016 places Oklahoma at #48 out of 51 in regards to teacher pay. Proponents of the pay increase say that teachers shouldn't have to work multiple jobs to make ends meet as they are doing the most important work in the world and should be paid as such.
As far as Louisiana is concerned, our teachers certainly deserve more - but are fairing much better in the national rankings. Currently, the Bayou State is sitting at #34 nationally, averaging $49,745 per teacher per year. That being said, President of the Louisiana Association of Educators Debbie Meaux thinks things are far from perfect. In an interview with WWL in New Orleans, she said ''We are below the southeastern regional average, probably since Governor Blanco was in office.''