Monday, April 29, 2019

What does the research show on school choice?

After reviewing the empirical literature on school choice, Dr. Greg Forster finds a strong consensus in the research in favor of positive effects. Indeed, he says, school choice policies are better supported by empirical evidence than any other kind of education reform.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Oklahoma teacher arrested for molestation and child abuse

"A teacher from Goodwell Public Schools was arrested last week on four counts of lewd molestation and four counts of child abuse," KFDA reports.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Police investigating after video shows teacher assaulting student at OKC school

The teacher involved was arrested, KOCO reports.

Mangum superintendent supports education tax credit

Senate Bill 407 "has the potential to impact positively even more public schools by increasing the dollar amount they can receive to implement or expand innovative programs," Mangum Public School superintendent Shane Boothe writes in a letter to the Tulsa World. "This is critical for rural districts, like mine, that can lag behind those with larger ad valorem tax bases."
Opponents also argue this bill would further divert funds from public schools. But if this logic holds, all tax credits divert funds from public schools, including much larger tax credits for industries like medical research, renewable energy and aerospace. Shouldn’t you also oppose these?
We cannot attack the only tax credit that provides a direct benefit to public schools and ignore much larger ones for other industries. SB 407 doesn’t absolve the need to fund education. Its supporters wholeheartedly advocate for increased teacher pay and education funding in general. It will just help improve a school’s ability to solicit even more donations. 
Businesses will continue to donate using tax credit programs. Let’s help them give more to those that desperately need it: our public schools.

Friday, April 19, 2019

Scholarship critics notably silent on millions in tax credits

School-choice opponents argue that "tax credits reduce available state funding for schools," Ray Carter reports. "But those same critics have been largely silent when it comes to a host of other tax-credit measures that involve at least $116 million in combined fiscal impact on state tax collections."

Popular tax-credit program is helping kids

"Oklahoma gives tax breaks for CNG use, windmills, rehabilitating old buildings, and even American Ninja Warrior filming," Jonathan Small writes. "Why would we support those causes, but then refuse to use tax credits to boost education funding for Oklahoma children?"

Noble schools want to keep four-day weeks

FOX 25 has the story.

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Mother says son was bullied at Oklahoma elementary school

KFOR has the story.

Chickasha Public Schools employee accused of inappropriate contact with students

"Deputies are investigating allegations against a former Chickasha Public Schools employee," News 9 reports. "On Saturday the school superintendent confirmed the staffer is accused of having inappropriate contact with students."

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Teenage girl finds new beginning

After "a living hell" which most of us can't imagine, this teenage girl found a new beginning, thanks to a Christian school and Oklahoma's tax-credit scholarship program.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Dozens of districts adopted four-day weeks to save money

"In recent years, school districts across the state have adopted four-day-a-week calendars to save money and recruit teachers," The Oklahoman reports.
Most four-day districts are in rural communities, especially near the border where teachers can find a higher paying job in the neighboring state. Ninety-two school districts have four-day weeks, including Noble Public Schools, a 2,900-student district that switched to a four-day week in 2015 as a way to save money without cutting personnel or programs.

Superintendent Frank Solomon said the switch resulted in improved student engagement and fewer attendance and discipline issues. "We're maintaining a highly qualified teaching staff, our academics are not suffering, and we're saving some money," he told The Oklahoman.

Hugo Public Schools in southeast Oklahoma moved to a four-day schedule two years ago to recruit teachers, especially as neighboring districts had already made the switch, according to Superintendent Earl Dalke. Dalke said requiring all districts to have five-day weeks would take away the in-state competition. "Unless the state mandates the change, it is unlikely we will return to a five-day week," he said.