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They're moms. They're attorneys. They believe they can help end the Oklahoma teacher walkouts

School closings in Oklahoma are a big concern for parents, so a group of mom lawyers decided to take matters into the...

Posted: Apr 8, 2018 1:03 PM
Updated: Apr 8, 2018 1:03 PM

School closings in Oklahoma are a big concern for parents, so a group of mom lawyers decided to take matters into their own hands.

On Monday, more than 100 women are expected to march almost a mile from the Oklahoma Bar Association to the state Capitol in Oklahoma City to aid negotiations between legislators and educators.

Teacher walkouts in the state continued into their fifth day Friday, and they will extend into next week over demands for increased education funding.

Monday's march is the brainchild of Becki Murphy, an adoption attorney from Tulsa who shared the idea in a Facebook group for female lawyers called Girl Attorney.

"Most of us are moms, so it's affecting our ability to work," she told CNN. Murphy headed into her firm Friday morning with her two children, her friend's two kids and her two dogs.

"I thought, 'We are a strong group of intelligent women. Why aren't we coming together to do something about this? '"

Others agreed. Before long, 120 women with a variety of backgrounds and areas of expertise signed up to participate.

Dividing and conquering

The coalition is setting up group appointments with lawmakers to hear their concerns. It is also talking to educators about what they feel is needed for Oklahoma's public school system to flourish.

"We have a specific skill set. Every single day we have people in opposing positions, and we try to bring them to a middle ground," Murphy said.

To get ready for Monday, each attorney is taking up a different project, such as drafting press releases, preparing talking points and writing a letter to Gov. Mary Fallin.

And it's not just moms who are participating.

Susan Carns Curtiss, founder of Girl Attorney, said women without children are stepping up because they feel that Oklahoma's education system affects everyone.

"The current situation is not sustainable," she told CNN. "It's not good for the kids, it's not good for the teachers and it's not good for the state."

Curtiss' children attend public schools, but she also considers the crisis from beyond a parental perspective.

"We are really wanting to support other professionals in our state who have been brave enough to walk out and stay out," she said, adding that she feels privileged to be able to stand behind educators on this issue.

Community over politics

The conflict between teachers and legislators has been tense for the last week, but both Murphy and Curtiss emphasized that the women of Girl Attorney are not taking a political stance.

Instead, their priority is to help both sides come up with a solution that considers everyone's best interest.

They also want to show what can be accomplished when outspoken women work as a team -- which is why many, such as Murphy, are bringing their daughters.

Ragon Fancy, Murphy's 11-year-old daughter, is a student at Jenks Public Schools near Tulsa. Her fifth-grade teachers were at the Capitol all this week, and the mother-daughter duo hopes to link up with them on Monday.

"I think it's important, especially now, for her to see women come together," Murphy said. "I want her to see that we are powerful, we are strong and we can effect change."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 153270

Reported Deaths: 3807
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto10332104
Hinds10190199
Harrison7244111
Jackson6521124
Rankin5805103
Lee523695
Madison4964107
Forrest388286
Jones367788
Lauderdale3575147
Lafayette334952
Washington3241108
Lamar296650
Oktibbeha251362
Lowndes243864
Bolivar242984
Panola229653
Neshoba2241118
Marshall221250
Leflore207791
Monroe203978
Pontotoc202929
Lincoln194865
Sunflower192555
Warren178757
Tate177051
Union171026
Copiah167040
Pike164758
Yazoo158840
Scott157930
Itawamba156135
Alcorn154828
Pearl River154168
Coahoma151943
Simpson151953
Prentiss149531
Adams144451
Grenada142845
Leake139444
Holmes132361
Tippah128030
Covington127939
George126425
Winston124526
Hancock123640
Wayne120623
Marion118646
Attala117534
Tishomingo110842
Chickasaw109032
Newton108029
Tallahatchie97727
Clay93427
Clarke93053
Jasper84822
Stone80015
Calhoun78113
Walthall77229
Montgomery75825
Carroll74015
Lawrence73414
Smith72816
Noxubee72517
Yalobusha72328
Perry68126
Tunica62319
Greene61222
Claiborne58916
Jefferson Davis58817
Amite55814
Humphreys54719
Benton49918
Quitman4977
Webster46414
Kemper44718
Wilkinson40422
Jefferson36411
Franklin3535
Choctaw3507
Sharkey32317
Issaquena1204
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 249524

Reported Deaths: 3578
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson33064500
Mobile19951362
Madison13596148
Tuscaloosa13246154
Montgomery12435236
Shelby1061677
Baldwin889098
Lee781466
Morgan686150
Etowah643966
Calhoun6430121
Marshall635355
Houston537738
DeKalb492236
Cullman451542
Limestone433345
St. Clair432555
Lauderdale422354
Elmore412964
Walker3710111
Talladega359354
Jackson329823
Colbert329642
Blount299740
Autauga278042
Franklin256434
Coffee248315
Dale236254
Chilton227438
Dallas226832
Russell22383
Covington220434
Escambia198931
Tallapoosa184391
Chambers177950
Pike159914
Clarke159819
Marion143636
Winston135123
Lawrence131636
Pickens125718
Geneva12438
Marengo123124
Bibb119617
Barbour117811
Butler117842
Randolph104921
Cherokee103424
Hale97831
Fayette92516
Washington92219
Clay92024
Henry8756
Lowndes80229
Monroe79011
Cleburne77814
Macon74522
Crenshaw72030
Bullock70219
Perry6906
Lamar6898
Conecuh68814
Wilcox64218
Sumter58622
Greene42818
Choctaw42713
Coosa3544
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