Day 6: Teachers still fighting, want to go back to class

Day 6: Teachers still fighting, want to go back to class
(Source KSWO)

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (KSWO) - Day six of the teacher walkout is complete at the state capitol after thousands descended upon the capitol for another day of fighting for education funding.

Elgin Middle School Counselor Sandy Defilippo said she misses her students, but refuses to go back empty-handed.

"We all want to get back but it's very important that we can go back and tell our students this is what we did to fight for you, not just we had a week out of school and here we are in the same place. We want to be able to tell our students this is why we did it and this is the outcome," said Defilippo.

As the walkout has gone on, the crowds have consistently grown. Monday, there were dozens of canopies set up, covering the lawn on the East side of the building. Duncan Public School teachers were there and were visited by Representative Marcus McEntire, who filled them in on what's going on inside the capitol.

"He told us that our raise is intact. That we have the raise, it's fully funded. He said capital gains probably is not a go and the wind energy tax would bring in some funds, but it probably wouldn't be until next year that we would see any money from that. He was very nice, very cordial and said he's always supported us," said Duncan teacher Sonia Norton.

As the teachers continue to march, hoping for change, Marlow Middle School Principal Ross Ridge said he feels they are making a difference.

"They've had a year to make these decisions and the last week, we've made four. There is a little bit of headway, we are making progress, but we just need to keep this going. Not just the rally, but the funding of education," Ridge said.

Teachers say they won't stop fighting, but they're hopeful our legislators can get more work done very soon.

"We're ready to go back to the classroom tomorrow, we want to go back, but we want to go back under the right conditions," said Defilippo.

"I would like to be in school to tell you the truth. We need to get our testing done and we need to make some good decisions in the capitol, set things straight and get a plan going," said Ridge.

"We're anxious to get into the classroom with our kids. We miss our students, but this is a historical event and we want to make sure we see it through," said Norton.

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