education | KGOU


Calumet Elementary School students read together in spring 2020. Older students and younger students would team up to improve their reading, however programs like this have been scrapped because of COVID-19.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

Backlash is mounting toward a resolution passed by Oklahoma’s State Board of Education to equalize funding for charter and traditional public schools.

In this file photo, students are seen in a classroom at Santa Fe South High School, a public charter school based inside a converted department store at the former Crossroads Mall in Oklahoma City.
Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma Watch

Two education measures finalized this week mark a win for those who subscribe to the philosophy that public tax dollars should follow students to the school of their choice. 

State Department of Education

Everyone is eager for schools to offer more in-person classroom instruction, and with vaccinations becoming available for teachers and staff that goal is edging closer to reality. Coronavirus has not only forced schools, teachers, parents and students to adjust, but it has led to a re-examination of the future of education. State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister discusses what lies ahead for Oklahoma schools with KGOU's Dick Pryor in Capitol Insider. 

Education Issues To Watch During Oklahoma’s 2021 Legislative Session

Feb 16, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic turned education on its head.

Measures introduced in the 2021 session are designed to combat new issues faced by schools because of the coronavirus as well as address old ones that were exacerbated by the pandemic.

2021 State of the State address
Legislative Service Bureau (LSB) Photography

In a wide ranging interview shortly after his State of the State address, Governor Kevin Stitt discussed his goals for the 2021 Oklahoma Legislative Session with KGOU's Dick Pryor and eCapitol's Shawn Ashley. In part one of the interview (first broadcast on February 5), Stitt discussed state-tribal relations; in part two he talked about education, economic development, government regulation, the state's coronavirus response, his relationship with the Oklahoma House of Representatives and Senate and 2021 policy priorities. This interview was conducted on February 4, 2021. 

WahZhaZhe, Tsalagi, Español: No Matter The Language, COVID Creates Challenges For Immersion Learning

Jan 14, 2021

In normal circumstances, foreign language immersion instruction requires some classroom creativity to make it work.

Legislative Service Bureau (LSB) Photography

This is the Manager’s Minute.  

Recent events in Washington, D.C. stunned the nation. The rioting in the Capitol also reminded us of the importance of reliable, timely and accurate reporting, especially during adversity.  


Oklahoma Schools Will Benefit From Latest COVID-19 Relief Package

Dec 23, 2020
a school classroom with empty chairs
comedy_nose / Flickr Creative Commons

Oklahoma school finances have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. But the new coronavirus relief package will be a much needed buoy for the state’s districts.

School Funding Outlook Distressing In An Already Difficult Year

Nov 29, 2020
As Edmond Memorial High School's Elanna Dobbs and other teachers cope with the challenges of teaching in a pandemic, public school districts across Oklahoma are bracing for budget cuts for the 2021-22 school year.
Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma Watch

Oklahoma public school districts are bracing for additional funding cuts this school year and next, even as they currently struggle to teach students during a pandemic with fewer state dollars.

Josh Brock, Epic Charter School’s CFO, is seen at a board meeting on Oct. 16, 2019.
Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma Watch

A group of Republican lawmakers are calling for an investigative audit of Oklahoma’s State Department of Education in the wake of state auditor Cindy Byrd’s explosive report about Epic Charter Schools.

Oklahoma’s State Board Of Education To Discuss Schools’ COVID-19 Protocols

Aug 26, 2020
A display of typical school supplies and electronic devices being distributed to Oklahoma City Public School students is pictured at Eugene Field Elementary School, Monday, Aug. 24, 2020
Sue Ogrocki / AP

Oklahoma’s State Board of Education will meet Thursday to talk about schools’ COVID-19 protocols. StateImpact’s Robby Korth reports the board will discuss how reopening has gone across the state during the first few weeks of classes. 

Oklahoma Schools' COVID-19 Guidelines Are Widely Ignored By Many Rural Districts

Aug 24, 2020
Stilwell Superintendent Geri Gilstrap originally recommended the district start the school year with distance learning, but the Stilwell Board of Education voted in favor of the community's wishes to reopen in-person classes.
Faith Phillips / Stilwll High School

The 800 residents of Dewar have been fairly split.

Half of the eastern Oklahoma town’s parents told the local school district they refused to send their children to school with a mask, Superintendent Todd Been said. The other half wouldn’t send their children unless everyone wore one.

official state portrait
State Department of Education

Oklahoma school districts are nearing time to welcome students back for classes. The pressure is building for students to return to the classroom, but the COVID-19 pandemic has forced a reevaluation of teaching methods and how to keep students, staff and teachers safe. State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister discussed the critical issues involved and how Oklahoma schools are planning to operate during the fall with KGOU's Dick Pryor and eCapitol news director Shawn Ashley.

"Alfalfa" Bill Murray
Oklahoma Historical Society

When Oklahoma A&M officials told Alfalfa Bill Murray they wanted to put his name on a university building in 1935, he wasn’t sure it was a good idea.

Walton Family Foundation

This is the Manager’s Minute.


KGOU, StateImpact Oklahoma and our public radio partners are ramping up efforts to report on the 2020 elections through Oklahoma Engaged. 

Here’s What School Could Look Like For Oklahoma Students Next Fall

May 28, 2020

The coronavirus will change school next fall.

The Oklahoma State Department of Education has issued a series of guidelines for schools. But will we see a statewide shutdown of schools and shift to distance learning next fall like we did this spring?

Legislature Lays Out Policy Priorities In Bills Sent To Governor

May 18, 2020
The Oklahoma State Capitol is being renovated.
Ryan LaCroix / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

Because of a legislative session shortened by COVID-19, only a handful of education policy bills moved through the House and Senate to make it to the governor’s desk

A group of rural Oklahoma lawmakers are asking the State Department of Education to reconsider rules they say would end four-day school weeks.

A letter sent out by the Council for Great City Schools calls for stimulus funding to head off an "educational catastrophe." The letter was signed by OKC Public Schools Superintendent Sean McDaniel and Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent Deborah Gist
Courtesy Council of Great City Schools

Without a massive bailout from the federal government, the nation’s largest school districts face an “educational catastrophe,” according to a letter signed by Tulsa and Oklahoma City’s superintendents.

Kindergarten teacher Michelle Brooks works on sounding out letters with her class at Nichols Hills Enterprise Elementary School on Feb. 11.
Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma Watch

Reading experts and brain scientists agree nearly every child can learn to read if they are taught using explicit, systematic, research-based instruction. 

So why aren’t all teachers and schools using this method?