Claremore Daily Progress

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February 12, 2014

Claremore school board tables action on district participation in OEC funding rally

CLAREMORE —

The Claremore Board of Education voted to table any approval regarding teacher and administrator participation in the Oklahoma Education Coalition (OEC) funding rally March 31 at the state capitol in Oklahoma City.
As funding cuts toward common education continue statewide, teachers, administrators and patrons are calling on legislature to prioritize state funding in education, and restore per pupil funding to prerecession (FY08) levels.
Claremore Classroom Teacher’s Association (CCTA) President Jennifer Esau, an advocate of the coalition, addressed the school board about the amount of teacher and staff response she has received throughout the district.
Esau said as an early childhood special education teacher, she understands the negative impact of funding cuts on student academic achievement.
“Members from the CCTA have met with teachers and staff from each school and there is a good response in the amount of supporters.”
Esau was unable to provide an estimate of the number of Claremore teachers who endorsed the resolution to participate in the rally, however, she said there is definitely some interest.
School board members agreed to table approval of the proposed OEC resolution until a “roundabout” number of supporters can be determined.
“We can declare March 31 as a professional day, or we can organize a representative group to send on behalf of the district,” said Superintendent Michael McClaren. “The district is unable to pay for means of transportation to the rally. Bus transportation would be up to the teachers.” 
Board member Patrick Gotcher said he is all for participation in the rally, however, he would like to see a rough estimate of how many supporters plan to attend the event before any decision is made to cancel a day of learning in the classroom. 
Esau said an informal survey could be issued to each school to get a better idea of how many faculty members plan to make the trip.

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