Teachers continue to leave Oklahoma in wake of more unfulfilled pay-raise promises

Jun 11, 2017

Hope Cory, who taught at Northwest Classen in Oklahoma City for two years, is moving to Spain to teach.
Credit Emily Wendler / KOSU

This year, Oklahoma lawmakers indicated once again that they were going to give teachers in the state raises. And, once again, the state Legislature failed to deliver.

The House even passed two budgets, one containing educator raises and one without them—and ultimately passed the one without raises.

Lawmakers couldn’t even pass a $1,000 teacher raise to keep up with inflation.

As a result, notes KOSU, more and more teachers are packing their bags and setting out for greener pastures. Many of the state’s teachers—including Oklahoma’s 2016 Teacher of the Year—are moving to Texas.

But his counterpart from 2017, Teacher of the Year Jon Hazell, is encouraging educators to stay and fight. Hazell says teachers in Oklahoma have a right to be angry, but he insists things will get better if teachers refuse to leave—or back down.