Day 7: teachers still fighting, crowd begins to shrink

Day 7: teachers still fighting, crowd begins to shrink
(Source KSWO)

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (KSWO) - Thousands marched at the Oklahoma state capitol again for day seven of the teacher walkout, despite the fact several districts have begun to return to the classroom.

Despite the crowds of people marching again Tuesday, there appeared to be significantly fewer people present than there were Monday. Several teachers attributed that to the fact that some districts have already gone back in session, with others going back Wednesday. Because of that, they said it's even more important for them to continue to fight."

Despite other smaller districts heading back, Lawton Public School teachers said they remain steadfast in the fight for funding. In fact, they said not only will they be marching for their students, but the students who have already had to return to the classroom.

"We know that we do have colleagues across the state that are not allowed to come. We understand that some smaller districts and some here locally are going back to school. That just deepens our resolve to stay here and fight the fight for all of us," said LPS teacher Pamela Thomas.

Despite other schools being in session, Lawton Public School teacher Ellen Driskill said she still anticipates they will find ways to show their support.

"I think even those districts that are needing to go back to school, which I totally understand. We as teachers want to be in the classroom, we just feel like this is necessary at this time. I feel like they will be sending folks from their school to continue to make their voices heard. Maybe not their whole staff but they'll be sending groups of people to come and still be a part of this," Driskill said.

Apache Public Schools is back in session and has been doing just that. In fact, the only two days they've been closed for the walkout were last Monday and this Monday. Despite that, they've sent five advocates to the capitol every day to support the cause while allowing others to stay back and complete testing."

"Luckily, we have a very supportive community. We've had substitutes rally to come in and help us cover classes and we're making sure our testing is getting covered and so forth. We just make it work. Like everything else, we just make it work," said Apache teacher Lesli Metzger.

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