Saturday, September 30, 2017

Sapulpa school shooting threat reported to police

"An alleged plan to carry out a shooting at the Sapulpa high school and junior high campuses was reported to police Saturday," the News on 6 reports.
School administrations, working in coordination with Sapulpa Police, are actively investigating the alleged threat. 
Assistant Superintendent Johnny Bilby said, “Sapulpa Public Schools take all threats seriously. The safety of our students and staff are our top priority.” He also said there will be an increased police presence at the schools on Monday.

‘Dark’ money duplicity

"The teachers unions decry dark money," Peter Cook writes, "but spend plenty of it." Oklahomans know this all too well.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Owasso High School investigates student fight video

"Owasso parents are upset about a brawl between two high school students that was caught on video and posted online," the News on 6 reports. "Parents said they're concerned about student safety."

The funding crisis myth

"The narrative that schools need more money distracts from discussions about how dollars are being spent," Frederick M. Hess and Amy Cummings write.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

By a margin of more than 4 to 1, Oklahoma Republicans say tax dollars should follow the child

In a recent statewide survey of 1,016 likely Oklahoma voters (margin of error: plus-minus 3.07 percent), respondents were asked:
Educational choice gives parents the right to use the tax dollars associated with their child’s education to send their child to the public or private school which best serves their needs. Generally speaking, would you say you support or oppose the concept of educational choice?
Fully 65 percent of those surveyed say they support using tax dollars to send their child to a school of choice, whereas 28 percent oppose. Oklahoma Republicans, Democrats, and Independents all support educational choice—with the Republican tally coming in at 76 percent to 17 percent.

Read the entire survey here.

Edmond pre-K student found wandering near busy roadway after leaving school

KFOR has the story.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Vian school bus driver under investigation for picking up hitchhiker

"A school bus driver for Vian Public Schools is currently under investigation, according to Superintendent Victor Salcedo," KFSM reports. "Salcedo said the bus driver is accused of giving a hitchhiker and a dog a ride on their bus while students were on board on September 12."

One parent, Naticia Drew, says she has had problems with this particular driver before. "The kids have been late for 45 minutes because they told me she felt like she needed to call on some horses or some dogs that were sick and wait on animal control to get there."

Trump favors educational choice

Course choice for rural schools

Good article by Jonathan Small today in the Enid News & Eagle.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Matt Damon wants to limit school choice for your kids

Of course, he sends his kids to posh private schools, the Daily Caller reminds us.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Woman says Caney Valley teacher is bullying special-needs third grader

KJRH has the story.

Hilldale teacher says student assaulted her and exposed himself

CNHI News has the story.

Why millennials support school choice

"We’re used to having plenty of options," Tommy Schultz explains, "and we distrust institutions."

Ed choice can help ease growing pains

Deer Creek has a well-deserved reputation as one of the best public school districts in Oklahoma. For example, the average student in Deer Creek is performing better in math than 72 percent of students in Oklahoma, according to researchers at the George W. Bush Institute. Moreover, the average student in Deer Creek is performing better in math than 67 percent of students in the United States and better than 56 percent of students in other developed economies.

Unsurprisingly, many parents want to live in the district. The Oklahoman noted last week that Deer Creek's enrollment is increasing. With that in mind, policymakers should always be aware that private-school choice policies (vouchers, tax credits, ESAs, etc.) can serve as a "pressure release valve" in high-growth areas like Deer Creek.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Henry Scholarships are improving education

"The success of Oklahoma's Lindsey Nicole Henry Scholarship Program proves that when customers have power, providers are more responsive and service improves," the state's largest newspaper editorializes. "This is breaking news only in government."
Critics of the scholarship program argue parents aren't capable of figuring out if their child is properly served in a private school, but then argue those same parents are fully capable of navigating federal, state and local bureaucracies to obtain an improvement in services not being rendered in a public school. If you can do the latter, then obviously you can do the former.
Read the whole thing here.

4 in 10 Oklahoma high school graduates have little chance of succeeding in college

"The status quo isn't acceptable," the state's largest newspaper notes today. "When 42 percent of Oklahoma's high school graduates have little chance of succeeding in college, the chances for state prosperity are similarly limited."

Monday, September 11, 2017

All the news that fits

Jonathan Small and I have a new post over at OCPA about media bias in Oklahoma. Whether through story selection or the choice of narrative framework, journalists don't always report the news fully and fairly. Moreover:
It’s not just what stories they choose to write (think of The New York Times slogan “All the news that’s fit to print”) and how they construct those stories. It’s also what stories they choose not to write. 
Here’s an example. When a public opinion poll in 2015 showed voter opposition to school vouchers, a reporter for the Tulsa World correctly deemed it newsworthy and reported the findings. But last month when OCPA sent this same reporter the results of a new survey showing strong support for Education Savings Accounts and other forms of private-school choice, she replied tersely: “Wayne Greene, opinion pages editor, is your contact at the Tulsa World.” In other words, all the news that fits, we print. Anything else is just your opinion. 
Now granted, newspapers are entitled to evaluate newsworthiness and make their own publishing decisions. Still, this hardly seems like an appropriate response from a reporter to a source. 
Is it any wonder that only one in seven Republicans trust the media?
Read the whole thing here.


Another survey from the education establishment and—surprise!—another Tulsa World news story.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Teen suicide rates spike during back-to-school season

"Many parents are recognizing the negative effects that forced schooling has on mental health," Kerry McDonald writes.