Emily Wendler / KOSU

Oklahoma Schools Say They Need More Funding, So Why Can't They Get It?

Superintendents across Oklahoma are begging lawmakers to do something about school funding. Ultimately, school officials want more money, but that requires raising taxes, which is a tough thing to do in Oklahoma—for many reasons. However, this year, solutions are popping up in unexpected places. The Superintendent of Ponca City Public Schools, David Pennington, said if education funding is cut next year he is going to have to drastically change the way his school functions. “It’s hard for me...

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In The 1920s, A Community Conspired To Kill Native Americans For Their Oil Money

Generations ago, the American Indian Osage tribe was compelled to move. Not for the first time, white settlers pushed them off their land in the 1800s. They made their new home in a rocky, infertile area in northeast Oklahoma in hopes that settlers would finally leave them alone. As it turned out, the land they had chosen was rich in oil, and in the early 20th century, members of the tribe became spectacularly wealthy. They bought cars and built mansions; they made so much oil money that the...

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Headlines for Friday, April 14, 2017:

  • Largest bomb ever used by the U.S. might have come from the Sooner State. (Tulsa World)

  • A state House employee who warned of “cross dressers” at the Capitol apologizes. (NewsOK)

This Week in Oklahoma Politics, KOSU's Michael Cross talks with Republican Political Consultant Neva Hill and ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel about the state having to once again borrow money, this time $31M to pay for operational expenses, lawmakers sending Governor Fallin a measure to end tax credits for the wind industry this summer rather than in 2021 and an e-mail causes controversy when it warns House pages of "crossdressers" in the building.

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The 2017 legislative session is beyond the halfway point and the clock is ticking on lawmakers who have until the end of May to set the state’s budget and plug an $870 million funding hole. Legislators say every option is on the table, including one with growing public support: Increasing taxes on oil and gas.

First, it was state Democrats like minority leader Scott Inman, who have long argued Oklahoma’s taxes are too generous for oil and gas companies.

Flickr / texasbackroads

In 1999, a Minnesota educator was removed from teaching biology, after school administrators learned he was focusing on creationism, and not evolution.

A bill now heading to the Oklahoma House floor would protect teachers from such backlash, if they chose to do something similar.

The House General Government Oversight and Accountability Committee voted 4-3 Thursday to send the Senate-passed bill to the House floor for a vote.

sde.ok.gov

A study conducted by the State Department of Education casts doubt on the assumption that switching to a four-day school week will save money.

More and more districts are making the switch to the shortened week, citing costs savings as the reason. But the study, requested by Governor Mary Fallin, shows that might not be the case.

Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) faced off with constituents at a town hall this week, telling the members of the audience that they don't pay his salary.

Headlines for Thursday, April 13, 2017:

  • Congressman Cole hears from constituents at town hall meeting. (KFOR)

  • Mullin says he canceled town hall over “threats”. (Tulsa World)

oeta.tv

Over the past few years, state lawmakers have increased fees on criminal penalties as a way to increase revenue. But, a new report from OETA finds the overall cost to the tax payer appears to far outweigh the benefits.

KOSU's Michael Cross sat down with Jennifer Reynolds to talk to her about her special report: "Dollars for Dimes."

The special report airs tonight (April 13) at 7:30pm on OETA.

Flickr / texasbackroads

A teacher pay raise bill is one step closer to hitting the Governor's desk, after Lawmakers passed it out of its final Senate Committee on Wednesday.

The Senate Committee on Appropriations voted 39-3 for House Bill 1114.

The measure calls for a $1,000 teacher pay raise next year, $2,000 the following year and $3,000 in the third year. A $1,000 raise would cost about $53 million a year.

A bill that brings an early end to the last major tax incentive for the wind industry has cleared its last legislative hurdle and now awaits Gov. Mary Fallin’s signature.

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KOSU's Michael Cross talks about political news in Oklahoma with ACLU Oklahoma Executive Director Ryan Kiesel and Republican political consultant Neva Hill.

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Education News

Emily Wendler / KOSU

Superintendents across Oklahoma are begging lawmakers to do something about school funding. Ultimately, school officials want more money, but that requires raising taxes, which is a tough thing to do in Oklahoma—for many reasons. However, this year, solutions are popping up in unexpected places.

The Superintendent of Ponca City Public Schools, David Pennington, said if education funding is cut next year he is going to have to drastically change the way his school functions.  

Flickr / texasbackroads

The Senate passed a measure on Thursday that will overhaul Oklahoma's A through F School Report Card system.

For years, educators have called Oklahoma's A through F school report card flawed and unfair. They say the focus on student test scores is a bad way to measure a school’s performance.

Under House Bill 1693, the newly proposed system will focus more on student academic growth from year to year.

Flickr / texasbackroads

In 1999, a Minnesota educator was removed from teaching biology, after school administrators learned he was focusing on creationism, and not evolution.

A bill now heading to the Oklahoma House floor would protect teachers from such backlash, if they chose to do something similar.

The House General Government Oversight and Accountability Committee voted 4-3 Thursday to send the Senate-passed bill to the House floor for a vote.

More Education News
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