'Momentum is on our side,' Oklahoma teachers union leader declares

Oklahoma educators began demonstrating at the State Capitol on Monday

Oklahoma teachers rallied at the state Capitol Tuesday on the seventh day of their walkout as classes remained canceled in the state's largest school districts.

A non-partisan poll released on Friday showed 72 percent of voters in Oklahoma, where teacher's pay is near the bottom among US states, supported the walkout.

They also want lawmakers to implement a hotel tax that would bring in an estimated $50 million.

The job action comes after a West Virginia strike last month ended with a pay raise and as teachers in other states, increasingly angry over stagnating wages, consider walkouts of their own. Arizona and Kentucky teachers have voiced their frustrations regarding teachers' salary and education underfunding.

State lawmakers have approved almost $450 million in new taxes and other revenues to help fund teachers' raise pay and boost other education spending since the walkout began on April 2, but the union is pushing for more action to raise overall spending by $600 million each year.

'Momentum is on our side,' Oklahoma teachers union leader declares

The Oklahoma Education Association is paying for the port-a-potties, busses to transport teachers and the stage and sound equipment.

The new tax and revenue that has been approved by lawmakers translates into an average teacher pay raise of about $6,100.

Norman teacher Jordan Nguyen pets Milo, a therapy dog who is a staple in her music classroom in Norman, Okla., as protests continue over school funding, April 9, 2018, in Oklahoma City.

Keri Hoffman, 35, an algebra teacher at Clinton Middle School, was arrested Sunday for multiple counts of rape involving a student, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation reports.

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