Gubernatorial Candidates Focus On Education Issues
OKLAHOMA CITY - Just four days before the gubernatorial runoff election, both Republican candidates come face to face in a debate.
While the two candidates have recently been at odds attacking one another in what many consider dirty campaigning, Friday, they both agreed that our education system was in desperate need of more money and more teachers.
“I've been saying we have to pay teachers market,” said Republican Candidate for Governor, Kevin Stitt.
"I will always be pushing for more funding,” said Republican Candidate for Governor, Mick Cornett.
Kevin Stitt said he wanted schools to have more local control over all of the tax money they get, so they can choose whether to spend it on buildings or people and supplies.
“And as governor, you've got to set the tone, and the tone is to respect the profession, respect the teachers, make sure they know they're valued and give them the tools they need in their classroom, to be as successful as possible," said Stitt.
Stitt said he believed the solution to the teacher shortage was more pay and giving teachers more control over their classrooms. He said his goal was to make Oklahoma top ten in education.
And while Cornett agreed that teachers should make more money, he said the state needed to do more in order to attract and retain top educators.
“When you’re attracting a highly educated 20 something year old, you also have to have a job for their spouse, you also have a quality of life in your community where they want their kids to grow up, so it’s a multifaceted approach, it's not just benefits,” said Cornett.
Democratic Candidate for Governor, Drew Edmondson, also faced off with his potentional opponents saying it's time to fix the education funding crisis.
“We need to do away with the capital gains loophole for millionaires that's costing us $130 million a year and let them pay their fair share of taxes,” said Democratic Candidate for Governor, Drew Edmondson.
Edmondson also said teachers needed to feel respected.