Bartlesville Education Association Asking For $100M In Funding To End Walkout

Wednesday, April 4th 2018, 1:44 pm
By: Amy Kauffman, Joseph Holloway

The Bartlesville Education Association is pushing a plan that would end the teacher walkout for them.

According to Heather Boyle, president of Bartlesville Education Association, the group wants lawmakers to fill the $50 million hole that was left after they repealed the hotel/motel tax.

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They are also asking for another $50 million to go toward the funding formula for schools.

They believe asking for $100 million in additional funding is a reasonable plan and are hopeful other district will jump on board.

"Teachers feel very empowered. Very supported. And we are ready to get that funding we need for our students," Boyle said.

The 'Time is Now' plan was originally started by a group in Bartlesville, and they feel it's time to clarify what they are asking for.

Bartlesville Superintendent Chuck McCauley said, "What they're asking for right now, is to fill that $50 million hole that was vacated by the hotel-motel tax, to clarify that. And also, an additional $50 million for operational that would go into the school funding formula."

McCauley has been working with other superintendents across the state to get a plan together because they want students back in the classroom.

"For many of these kids, this is their last year to be in school and they need to be in because we have state testing that needs to start, we have all the end of the year activities and we need those things to happen," he said.

But for those to happen, they said the Legislature needs to be in session Friday.

"They are usually gone, but we want them here working so that we can get a plan through and passed and get our teachers back in the classroom," Boyle said.

The president of the BEA said this plan came after surveying members about what it would take to end the walkout.

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Overall, they said they are happy with the salaries that came from the bills lawmakers passed but are still concerned with the lack of funding.

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The superintendent is meeting with teachers Friday to talk about the plan, but, right now, they feel like they have a lot of support from their district and from lawmakers that they've spoken with.