Thousands of public schools in Oklahoma and Kentucky were forced to close on Monday because of the teacher’s protests about the conditions of the public schools and the low-pay. These massive protests follow West Virginia’s success in protesting for higher pay.
These public school teachers have gone to social media to share their stories. I read a long viral Facebook post of an Oklahoma teacher describing how many students she has in every class and the limited number of chairs they have. As an art teacher, she doesn’t even have enough supplies for every student, let alone time to spend with each student individually to foster their creativity.
Social media has the power for these teachers to voice their experiences. They teach because they want to help students and be an important resource for students as they grow up. Yet, the government is underfunding them and therefore ignoring the importance of a quality education. Without social media, I would not be informed of this terrible situation nor would many other social media users. These viral Facebook posts have lead to Amazon wish lists and Kickstarter campaigns to donate to these teachers and the public schools, but also give people the opportunity to help the important cause. The protest itself shows the government how seriously the public school teachers take this issue because schools had to close as a result, but the social media campaign raises awareness for Americans who are not living in that area to help the cause.