Protestors Gather During Oklahoma State Superintendent's Address

Thursday, July 7th 2011, 1:48 pm
By: News 9

Jon Jordan, News 9 and wire reports

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Protestors converge in downtown Oklahoma City for the Oklahoma state superintendent's first State of the Education address Thursday.

Several public school teachers organized a public protest outside of the Cox Convention Center to oppose budget cuts recently implemented by Janet Barresi and the Department of Education.

Among the programs targeted for cuts is state reimbursement for teachers who achieve National Board Certification.

As part of the education budget for the next fiscal year, which begins the first of the month, Barresi along with the Board of Education agreed to do away with bonuses for Nationally Board Certified teachers. Teachers say those bonuses was money that was promised to them.

Teachers also said Barresi's decision to do away with bonuses will have a lasting impacting on the state.

"They've cut all funds, all funding for even future Nationally Board Certified teachers and I don't want to see that happen and I hope that she really thinks about this and changes her mind," said Amber Fowler, teacher.

Barresi did address the concerns of the protestors during her State of the Education address. She said the States Education Department saw cuts of 100 million dollars and unfortunately some tough decisions were made.