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Great, even Mississippi pays their teachers more than we do…


Pretty soon the people in Mississippi are going to start saying "Thank God For Oklahoma."

In what's the newest most obvious sign that we should all flee the state while we still have a chance, KFOR reported this week that both South Dakota and Mississippi will soon pass Oklahoma in the national teacher pay scale rankings. As a result, Oklahoma will be ranked 50th in the country for teacher pay. For those who received their education in an Oklahoma public school, that means we'ell be ranked dead last.


As the state fights to find ways to give teachers a raise, other states are poised to pass Oklahoma in the national pay scale rankings.

The two states previously below Oklahoma in the rankings are getting ready to phase in salary increases in time for next school year.

"We will be losing in the race to the bottom and, sadly, we will be at 50[th in the country] very soon," said Oklahoma State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister.

Oklahomans will go to the polls in November to vote on a one-percent sales tax increase, which among other things promises a $5,000 pay increase to all teachers.

I'll have plenty of time over the summer and fall to touch base on this, but David Boren's one-percent tax increase is a bad solution to a bad problem. It's like it was dreamed up by a rich old white man who sits on the board of an energy company or something. I don't mind paying higher income or property taxes to help fund education, but asking Oklahoma teachers, students and the working poor to fork over an extra penny or two for teacher pay raises every time they order an item from the McDonald's value menu is shameful and wrong.

Instead of a 1% permanent statewide sales tax, maybe Boren should use his power, influence and business connections to ask oil companies like Continental Resources to pay a percent or two more in oil and gas production taxes. That seems fair. Unlike our sales tax rates, Oklahoma has some of the lowest energy production taxes in the country. I'm sure Continental will be all for it. Remember, they're proud of all the great work they've done in producing Oklahoma public education:

continental poster

Seriously, Boren has a seat on the Continental Board, and as we learned from the whole earthquake cover up thing, he has no problem using that position to schedule meetings between Harold Hamm and state employees. Who knows, maybe he could arrange for a coffee meeting with Hamm, Joy Hofmeister and a few teachers and have them all beg for teacher pay raises. It's worth a shot! They could even bring Barry Switzer along for some laughs!

Hehe. Just kidding. Boren would never do something that crazy. It's a lot easier to ask the working poor to pay a disproportionate chunk of their income to fund teacher raises than it is to get rich, greedy oil companies to pay their fair share. Plus, he doesn't want to jeopardize his six-figure salary on Continental's Board.

Anyway, sorry about that rant. You can read more about Mississippi – the state with confederate stripes on its flag and the highest poverty rate in the country – surpassing Oklahoma in teacher pay rankings by clicking here. While you do that, I'm going to see how much it cost to live in Mississippi. If you can't beat em', join em'.

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