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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? 

A Zoom meeting of Oklahoma's State Board of Education.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

Though it’s unclear what school will look like, recent graduates and others will be able to teach in Oklahoma in fall 2020.

The state school board voted to unanimously allow a one-time, single year certification for people who were on track to get their certification.

Coronavirus Pandemic Will Likely Shrink Oklahoma Teach For America Corps

Apr 16, 2020
Teach for America member Symone Thompson (center) reacts during an Induction Placement Ceremony, after finding out she would be teaching at Oklahoma City's Millwood Arts Academy in the fall.
Teach for America

The more than 200 Teach for America Corps members working throughout Oklahoma are continuing to work with their students wherever possible.

Oklahoma State Superintendent Says COVID-19 Reinforces Need For Digital Access

Mar 30, 2020
State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister leads the Oklahoma State Board of Education meeting last week to vote on closing schools for the remainder of the 2020 spring semester. The closures were necessitated to combat COVID-19.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

Joy Hofmeister wants the internet in the home of every Oklahoma student.

In an interview Monday, she said the COVID-19 closures have exposed an equity gap between students who have home internet access and those who don’t.

How The University Of Oklahoma Moved Its Classes Online

Mar 27, 2020
The University of Oklahoma campus. The Norman campus is empty because students have moved all their in-person classes to the web.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

As the COVID-19 pandemic has halted businesses, public events and K-12 schools, Oklahoma’s higher education institutions have turned to virtual schooling for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester.

A sign outside the Sterling High School gymnasium warns people that teachers may be armed.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

A bill considered by the state legislature would change training requirements for armed teachers, paving the way for more guns in schools.

Engineering student Duncan Martin touches noses with Sophie, a member of Pete's Pet Posse. The therapy dogs can be found around the Oklahoma State University campus.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

With 80 percent of college students reporting anxiety or depression, schools have to find a way to help students.

$13 Million In Limbo While Stitt, Tribes Battle

Feb 13, 2020

Compacted tribes are sending their gaming money to the state of Oklahoma where it will be held while courts decide on tribal-gaming compacts.

Libby Osburn teaches a gifted and talented class at Cherokee Elementary School in Tahlequah.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

Most states don't discover gifted Native American students but Oklahoma has been able to buck that trend.

Oklahoma Lags Behind Country In Monetary Support For Higher Education

Jan 8, 2020
University of Oklahoma students walk to and from class at the school’s campus in Norman.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

As state funding for higher education has risen across the country, Oklahoma has been one of five states that’s seen a decline in the last five years.

Erika Buzzard Wright embraces a supporter during a press conference about the future of the four-day school week at the Oklahoma State Capitol.
Robby Korth / StateImpact Oklahoma

The fate of the four-day school week, used by dozens of rural districts in Oklahoma, is up in the air.

A national report found that thousands of gifted and talented black and Latino students aren’t identified by educators in Oklahoma.
Flickr / Jacqui Brown

Thousands of gifted and talented minority students aren’t identified by their schools in Oklahoma, according to a report published last month.

Justin Johnson, an eighth grader at Bridge Creek Middle School in Blanchard, works on an essay during writing class on Nov. 21, 2019. Bridge Creek has four-day school weeks.
Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma Watch

The state’s bar has been set for schools to operate on a four-day week and the requirements could force many schools back to five days a week.

Declining ACT Scores Raise College Readiness Concerns

Nov 6, 2019
Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma Watch

Oklahoma high school graduates’ scores on the ACT college-readiness exam declined in every subject this year, according to a report released Oct. 30.

Students and parents walk toward a Tulsa elementary school entrance.
Whitney Bryen / Oklahoma Watch

The latest “Nation’s Report Card" results are out, and Oklahoma continues to lag most other states in reading and math scores and faces a steep climb toward its goal of being in the top 20 states.

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