It’s hard to find a state that’s more anti-teacher, anti-union and anti-common sense than Oklahoma.
Knowing that, I guess we shouldn’t be surprised that some Oklahoma lawmakers are throwing legislative temper tantrums in an effort to punish teachers for all the progress they made in 2018.
On Friday, we told you about State Senator Mark Allen’s bill that would require groups to buy a $50,000 bond before they could protest at the capitol. Now we’ve learned that State Rep Todd Russ – the darn tootin’ yee-haw pictured above with his pal Governor Kevin Stitt – introduced a bill that would effectively block any future organized teacher walkouts or demonstrations.
Via News 9:
A bill introduced in the Oklahoma House of Representatives aims to prevent future attempts to organize teacher walkouts.
Rep. Todd Russ (R-Elk City), introduced HB2214, which would not only make it illegal for the board of education to strike but would ban any school employee from getting paid if they walk out of class for any reason.
That’s kind of weird. Unlike Senator Allen, Todd Russ actually voted for the teacher pay package. He’s also married to a teacher. Maybe this is his passive aggressive attempt to keep her from coming by the office and asking for more money?
Here’s some language from the bill:
“It shall be illegal for the board of education or school district employees to strike or threaten to strike or otherwise close schools or interfere with school operations as a means of resolving differences with the board of education, the State Department of Education, the State Board of Education, the Legislature or any other public official or public body. Any person engaging in a strike, shutdown or related activities shall be denied the full amount of his or her wages during the period of such violation.”
It goes on to say also that if any person participating in the strike also has a teaching certificate, it would be permanently revoked.
Really? You’re going to threaten to revoke their teaching certificates if they participate in the inevitable Oklahoma Teacher Walkout of 2034? Do you really think that’s going to stop them? At that point, teachers will simply do what most Oklahoma teachers already do – either leave the state for better pay or get an emergency teaching certificate.