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Saturday, December 20, 2014, 8:36 p.m.
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Tulsa superintendent: Teacher pay raises a must

By The Associated Press

This article was published January 25, 2014 at 2:17 p.m.

TULSA — The superintendent of Tulsa Public Schools says Oklahoma must do more to compete with higher teacher salaries in surrounding states to address its worsening teacher shortage.

Superintendent Keith Ballard told Tulsa-area lawmakers on Friday that there has been no state-mandated pay raise for teachers in Oklahoma since 2006. Ballard said funding for both common and higher education has dropped off significantly.

"We are in competition with northwest Arkansas. We are in competition with the Dallas-Fort Worth area," Ballard said at a special meeting that the Tulsa School Board hosts for legislators each year.

Nearly 400 Tulsa teachers retired or resigned in the previous school year. The district started the current year short-handed and never caught up.

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