By Sahid Fawaz
One teacher in Oklahoma is speaking up to create greater awareness for the profession’s low pay.
“It’s no secret teachers in [Oklahoma] are some of the lowest paid in the country.
‘I work two jobs after school, and I have a roommate who shares my house expenses,’ said Lilli Lyon, a Spanish teacher at Moore West Junior High School.
She said she hasn’t received a noticeable raise since she moved to Oklahoma from Indiana 10 years ago.
Lyon compared her net pay from 2009 to now and realized she has barely received any additional compensation in almost nine years. Any raise she has received in the past she said has been taken by the rising insurance costs.
‘It’s like $47, every two weeks, more. I mean, literally nothing,’ Lyon said.
She’s seeing more and more of her former colleagues move to other states, including two who just went to Dallas.
‘The cost of living there is very comparable, and the one is making $14,000 more a year just by driving four or five hours down that way,’ Lyon said.
Now, she’s sending out a letter with her pay check stubs to lawmakers, begging for help.
‘What I’m upset about is our children. Here we are, we need to teach them. This is our future. These are the kids that are going to be my doctor, my fireman,’ she said.
The Oklahoma Education Association said teachers are overdue for a pay raise.
‘It would take a $6,000 teacher pay raise right now just to make up the difference what they’ve lost over the last 10 years,’ said Katherine Bishop, the vice president of the Oklahoma Education Association.”
For the rest of the story, check out the full piece at KFOR here.