Flickr / Brian Cantoni

Oklahoma's College-Prep Test Scores Largely Unchanged Over Past Five Years

According to data recently released by the ACT, or American College Test, only 22 percent of Oklahoma students were ready for college courses in math, English, social science and biology when they graduated from high school. Nationally, 28 percent of students met the benchmark scores in all four subjects. Oklahoma students have maintained an average score of 20.7 on the test for the past five years. Nationwide, scores have gone down slightly since 2011. The national average for 2015 was 21.0...
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Emily Wendler / KOSU

The State Department of Education wants more Oklahoma kids to go to college. So they’re launching a pilot program that would make it easier for all students to apply. 

The Superintendent of Public Instruction, Joy Hofmeister, announced the Department's plan to make the college entrance exam, the ACT, free for all high school juniors for the following year. 

Headlines for Thursday, August 20, 2015:

  • Oil prices drop to lowest level in more than six years. (NewsOK)

  • Oklahoma high-school juniors can now take the ACT exam for free. (News9)

  • Another state Senator comes up with a plan for the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust. (Journal Record)

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The Obama administration on Tuesday proposed the first federal limits on methane emissions from the oil and gas industry. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency wants to cut the methane levels recorded in 2012 by at least 40 percent by 2025.

Flickr / biologycorner

Tulsa Public Schools starts back this week and for some in the district there will be a lot less testing due to recent cut backs. But still others say those testing cuts need to be deeper.

Last year, teachers spent 135 hours testing students in grades K through 12. This year, the Tulsa Public School Board reduced that time to 60 hours.

Headlines for Wednesday, August 19, 2015:

  • The Obama administration proposes first federal limits on methane emissions. (NewsOK)

  • Oil produces in Osage County file another law suit against the Bureau of Indian Affairs. (Tulsa World)

  • State Senator resigning amid embezzlement allegations won’t get pension. (AP)

Ah, back-to-school season in America: That means it's time for the annoyingly aggressive marketing of clothes, and for the annual warnings of a national teacher shortage.

But this year the cyclical problem is more real and less of a media creation. There are serious shortages of teachers in California, Oklahoma, Kentucky and places in between.

<a href="">Gage Skidmore</a>/Flickr/Creative Commons

Donald Trump is not the first Republican presidential candidate to float the idea of scrapping the principle that anyone born in the United States automatically becomes a US citizen. And he probably won’t be the last.

Headlines for Tuesday, August 18, 2015:

  • The state Parole Board approves rules designed to increase commutation of sentences. (NewsOK)

  • Tulsa commissioners consider replacing jail authority members who threatened lawsuits. (Tulsa World)

  • Efforts to create a Tulsa African American Commission might stall in the city council. (Oklahoma Watch)

Constance Favorite looks over a table filled with mementos in the living room of her bungalow in New Orleans — shoes, a tattered combat boot, an American flag and three photos, each of a smiling young woman. It's her daughter, Airman 1st Class Lakesha Levy.

"If our day didn't look bright, she would brighten it up with her little jokes she would tell. I'd say, 'Lakesha, you really should be a comedian,' " Favorite says.

Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

Even before the Obama Administration’s Clean Power Plan was finalized, politicians in Oklahoma were already fighting it in the court of public opinion, and in real court, too. And Gov. Mary Fallin has vowed that Oklahoma will not submit a state compliance plan to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.