Emily Wendler

Reporter

Emily Wendler joined KOSU in February 2015, following graduate school at the University of Montana.

While studying Environmental Science and Natural Resource Journalism with an emphasis on agriculture, a professor introduced her to radio and she fell in love.

The Cincinnati native has since reported for KBGA, University of Montana’s college radio station, and Montana’s PBS Newsbrief. She was a finalist in a national in-depth radio reporting competition for an investigatory piece she produced on campus rape. She also produced in-depth reports on wind energy and local food for Montana Public Radio.

She is very excited to be working in Oklahoma City, and you can hear her work on all things from education to agriculture right here on KOSU.

Ways to Connect

twitter.com/president_boren

OU President David Boren wants Oklahomans to vote on a $0.01 percent sales tax increase—that would be used to fund education.

Emily Wendler / KOSU

Students who get suspended in the Oklahoma City Public School district will now have an option: take the suspension and go home or go through a 10-day remedial program.

In the program, teachers will help the kids keep up with their work, as they go through character development classes and counseling.

“And so, instead of just sending them home, to sit at home, let’s keep ‘em in school, keep up with their academics, and then also teach ‘em some skills that they need to learn,” said Dr. Teri Bell, the district’s executive director of student support services.

Flickr / Brian Cantoni

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

Students with physical and mental disabilities are much more likely to be disciplined than other students in the state, according to Oklahoma Watch’s Nate Robson.

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. 

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.

The Oklahoma City Public Schools approved a new emergency operations plan at last night’s board meeting. The new plan lays out specific guidelines for responding to things like fires, tornadoes, earthquakes and school shooters.

But for the most part—the new plan details how the schools will respond no matter what the emergency is. How they will evacuate, take shelter, and how classes will re-unite if broken up.

Earlier this year, Capitol Hill High School in Oklahoma City retired its 88-year-old mascot: the Redskins. And tomorrow the school will be auctioning off pieces of the legacy.

More than 200 items-- from band uniforms to 30-year-old athletic uniforms -- will be available at the auction this Saturday in the Capitol Hill High School Cafeteria, located at 500 SW 36th Street in Oklahoma City.

Registration for the event begins at 8:30 a.m. and the actual bidding starts at 10:00.

Emily Wendler / KOSU

Monday was the first day back in the classroom for the Oklahoma City Public School district. It was also a new beginning for 14 Puerto Rican teachers that the district recruited because of the lack of teachers in the state. 

Odaliz Soto, one of the district's recruits, said she felt like she was already breaking down language barriers on her first day. 

Her kindergartners at Parmelee Elementary are mostly Hispanic, and speak very little English. So, Soto says everything twice.

ok.gov/sde/superintendent

Education reporter Emily Wendler spoke with the Superintendent of Public Instruction, Joy Hofmeister, about some of the more pressing issues in Oklahoma education.

At the top of the list was the teacher shortage, the new academic standards, and the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act in Washington. 

The ESEA was last reauthorized in 2002 by then President George W. Bush, who renamed it the No Child Left Behind Act. This law was meant to make sure low-income students got the same education as everyone else. It implemented mandatory testing and rated schools and teachers based on those testing results. This has been a contentious issue for many educators across the nation—including Superintendent Hofmeister.  

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