Oklahoma "Teacher Caucus" Takes a Hit in Primaries

Jul 1, 2016

Credit Trevor Brown / Oklahoma Watch

Public school funding and teacher pay has been repeatedly cut in Oklahoma to help plug the state’s $1.3 billion budget gap. To fight this trend, dozens of former school teachers and administrators filed to run for state office this fall.

This week during the primaries, this “teacher caucus” was dealt a serious blow, reports Oklahoma Watch. The number of current or former educators running in contested races was cut in half, down to 20. And five of those 20 must win a run-off contest to make November’s general election.

It’s not all bad news for the teacher caucus, though. Twenty-three other teacher candidates ran uncontested and won a free pass to November’s contest. That means, if all five of the run-off candidates win their elections, there could be as many as 43 educators running for Oklahoma’s state Senate or House come November.