Guymon teachers hope to send message to Oklahoma lawmakers on 3rd day of protesting

Guymon teachers hope to send message to Oklahoma lawmakers on 3rd day of protesting
Guymon teachers protest in 3rd day of Oklahoma walkouts (Source: KFDA)
Guymon teachers protest in 3rd day of Oklahoma walkouts (Source: KFDA)
Guymon teachers protest in 3rd day of Oklahoma walkouts (Source: KFDA)
Guymon teachers protest in 3rd day of Oklahoma walkouts (Source: KFDA)
Guymon teachers protest in 3rd day of Oklahoma walkouts (Source: KFDA)
Guymon teachers protest in 3rd day of Oklahoma walkouts (Source: KFDA)

Guymon, OK (KFDA) - Teachers in Guymon are protesting for a third day in hopes of sending a message to state lawmakers.

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Zach McIntyre has been a teacher at Guymon Public Schools for 16 years, and he is one of many Guymon teachers who have been at the Oklahoma capitol participating in a state-wide walkout as teachers demand more education funding from Oklahoma lawmakers.

"We've got a lot of enthusiasm everywhere," said McIntyre. "Right now we're just really pumped up and hoping to get some attention for the cause."

After voting last week, a vast majority of Guymon educators decided they would walk out in solidarity with teachers across the state.

65 Guymon Public School District teachers committed to travel to the capitol, while others are lining the streets of Guymon demanding change.

"We just want education to be funded in Oklahoma," said Guymon High School counselor Sherry Stonecipher. "It's more than just teacher raises, it's about funding for our students cause really we're here for the students. To get textbooks as they need them, to get schools supplies that are needed."

The walkout comes just days after the state approved some raises and school funding, but it was reportedly only a fraction of what the teachers' union demanded.

"I have to make a living," said McIntyre. "I have a kid of my own, I've got house payments, I've got car payments and all that good stuff."

As he now takes his voice to the streets of downtown Guymon, McIntyre said he's had to take money from his own pocket to buy school supplies.

"Probably over $1,000 a year, but you know that's just a guess," he said.

He's not the only one.

"Per year, probably $200, $250," said Stonecipher.

"We get $100 I guess I could say at the beginning of the year where it can go toward anything that we'd like it to go to like arts supplies, or pencils, markers scissors, whatever it may be," said kindergarten teacher Cassidy Livengood. "After that $100 is gone, it's out of our own pocket."

Teachers said they've received support from their school board, and they're calling on lawmakers to make education a priority.

"Oklahoma legislators, please make it to where I can do my job," said McIntyre.

Guymon Public Schools will remain closed until Friday, April 6.

Teachers will then meet to discuss plans for next week.

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