OEA releases results of December COVID-19 survey


OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The Oklahoma Educators Association put out a survey to see how teachers have been dealing with their jobs during the pandemic. 

Just over 3,100 teachers responded to the 53-question survey. 

OEA President Alicia Priest says a majority were from suburban areas. 

“Our educators are doing everything that they can, and they desperately need our support,” said OEA president Alicia Priest. “Our educators while they are making sure that the needs of their students are met are at a very stressed level.”

On a scale of 1-10, over 3,000 teachers who took the survey, their stress level averaged 7.702. 

63% of teachers surveyed believe schools are not safe for in-person learning. 

90% said social distancing is not possible at school. 

97% say their school has a virtual learning option. 

“If we are truly concerned with our students falling behind in education and the value of brick and mortar in school learning with a trained education professional… we as a state need to reflect on how we value and show value for public education,” said Priest. 

Priest also addressed teachers getting vaccinated. 

She says they’re thrilled Governor Stitt moved teachers to phase two, but also says from what she’s heard, the number of teachers planning to get the vaccine is about 60%. 

“I think as we see more folks take the shot and the spread is mitigated because of that, I think more people will be willing to step up and take it as well” she said. 

The survey also showed 82% of those who answered the survey are “not confident” Gov. Stitt will provide what they need to be safe at work. 

74% said the same thing about the legislature. 

The Governer’s office sent us this statement: 

“The data is clear: K-12 schools can operate safely and responsibly with face-to-face learning, and many of Oklahoma’s teachers, support staff and school administrators have done a tremendous job of adapting during a challenging start to this school year.  
We have heard from so many teachers who are excited about returning to their classrooms in January or are grateful to teach in a district that offers in-person instruction because they know how many students are struggling with distance learning.
It’s important to note that the majority of teachers are not union members and just a fraction of Oklahoma’s teachers completed the OEA’s survey.
The governor will continue to fight for Oklahoma children and families who are struggling while protecting the health of our educators.”

Charlie Hannema, Gov. Stitt spokesperson

Secretary of Education Ryan Walters also commenting. 

“We know this has been an extraordinary year for teachers, students and parents. I appreciate teacher feedback whether it’s in survey form or in the daily interaction I have with them. I also hear from parents and teachers concerned about the well-being of our students.
The governor and I believe it’s absolutely essential that student learning continues to take place. To ensure every student has access to a high quality of instruction, we believe all parents should have an in-person option for their students and that school reopening should be done in a safe way for everyone.
This is why we moved teachers to Phase 2 of the vaccination list and work daily with the Oklahoma State Department of Health to ensure safe protocols for school reopening.”

Secretary of Education Ryan Walters

For the full survey results visit the Oklahoma Educators Association website.

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