Oklahoma

Here’s a surprisingly short article from The Guardian about the awful current situation in Oklahoma education.

This quote sums things up pretty well.

“Most of our teachers work second jobs,” says Darlene Adair, Wagoner’s principal. “A lot of them work at Walmart on nights and weekends, or in local restaurants.” Ms Adair hopes that Walmart does not offer her teachers a full-time job, which would be a pay rise for many.

This is nuts.

And unfortunately, there is little in the offing that could possibly solve the crisis.

What worries me isn’t just the difficult lives that the educators have, but what might happen twenty or thirty years from now when those students are responsible for jobs and families that they may not have the skills and knowledge to manage effectively. It’s a crisis now, but it could easily become a catastrophe later.

Clearly they should pay the teachers more – if any decide to stay at all – but ultimately, it’s all, in my opinion tied to the fact that teaching isn’t seen as a career to aspire to, or one that is prestigious at all, especially for those who are coming out of school with debt to manage. According to a recent poll, despite how vital education is, it’s not even in the top ten most admired professions in this country.

Unfortunately, with the way educators are spoken of and/or dismissed, I don’t know how to change this.