The Norman Transcript

Headlines

April 10, 2013

Communities focus on education with forum

NORMAN — The Oklahoma League of Women Voters brought seven communities together Tuesday evening in a live-broadcast forum, Focus On Education, concentrating on issues facing public education in Oklahoma and fielding questions from viewers across the state.

Panelists David Blatt of the OK Policy Institute, Sharon Rodine of the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy, and Oklahoma City charter school parent Dee Robinson — among others — spoke on the status of education funding, children in Oklahoma and parental impact on student scholarship, respectively.

“The state Senate Republicans called for an additional $75 million to $100 million in state funding for common education, but their plan is contingent upon there being no tax cut taking effect in 2014, but the plan being promoted by the governor and House would enact a 25 percent cut in income tax taking effect next year,” Blatt said. “So even with those additional funds, the situation would still be very tight.”

Calling attention to the ever-widening gap as tax revenue shrinks and educational needs grow, Blatt said correcting the “misaligned revenue” must be a major priority.

Rodine discussed the number of children in poverty in Oklahoma and the crucial importance of education in remedying the situation, stating that funding and policy could directly affect a positive shift in children’s well-being.

“We need to think bigger, broader and better,” Rodine said. “As we look at policies, too often Oklahoma takes a more punitive approach than is necessary.

“We can look at positive and productive solutions by investing and helping those who need the resources instead of threatening to flunk them.”

Robinson discussed the dire impact of under-funding as evidenced by her local school, ultimately contributing to her decision to send her son to Kipp College Preparatory charter school.

“You say that our children are obese and inactive, but without proper investment in local schools, they can’t afford to build playgrounds or gymnasiums for those children, nor can they employ full-time or even part-time gym teachers,” Robinson said.

“I work in downtown Oklahoma City. I see the money we’re putting into project 360 and building this momentum. Why can’t we can’t put this kind of money and momentum into our education?”

For more information on these and other issues in education funding, visit www.okpolicy.org.

For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Headlines
  • Tornado Repair Oklahoma officials account for $9.4M in disaster spending

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Nearly a year after deadly tornadoes hit central Oklahoma, officials announced that they have spent close to $9.4 million in private donations on relief efforts....

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Moore schools receive $500K

    As Mickey Davis addressed the auditorium, the picture of a bright-eyed, happy 8-year-old on the podium in front of her could not be ignored. Davis’ son, Kyle Davis, was one of seven who lost their lives in the May 2013 tornadoes at Plaza ...

    April 24, 2014

  • Man arraigned after wife’s death

    A judge on Wednesday denied bond for a 37-year-old Norman man formally charged with stabbing his wife to death with a kitchen knife early Saturday morning in their southeast Norman apartment. Abid Sandhu, 37, was arraigned before Special ...

    April 24, 2014

  • Earth Day activities continue this week

    Oklahoma is no stranger to extreme weather, but many say those extremes are even greater than before. Norman resident and biologist Kathy Rand is convinced those climate irregularities are a result of climate change caused by pollution, ...

    April 24, 2014

  • Severe storms loom across central U.S. this weekend

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Forecasters are predicting a significant chance of strong tornadoes this weekend across a large part of the nation’s mid-section, an outbreak that could stretch from the Great Plains to the Midwest and South....

    April 25, 2014

  • Telling stories of a distant land

    Bakhtawar Aamire of Pakistan has been telling the same sad legend to Oklahomans for the past month. The story goes like this: Long ago, a young woman in love lived in the area that is now the city of Gujrat in the Punjab Province of ...

    April 25, 2014

  • NPS announces severe weather procedures

    Norman Public Schools is clarifying new severe weather/tornado procedures with letters to parents and a website that details the district’s severe weather plan....

    April 25, 2014

  • Sam Noble honored with national medal

    The Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History at the University of Oklahoma will be awarded the nation’s highest honor conferred on museums and libraries for service to the community, OU announced Thursday....

    April 25, 2014

  • Manufacturers see better times for economy, jobs

    NEW YORK — Companies are finally starting to spend some of the cash they’ve been sitting on, and that could mean a stronger economy and more jobs are on the way. Industrial companies such as General Electric, Honeywell and Caterpillar ...

    April 25, 2014

  • Workshop to empower young women

    BeautyIS, a free event targeted for girls ages 11 to 14 — with the purpose of helping them uncover the beauty within themselves — will be from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday at the LoveWorks Center, 127 Main St....

    April 25, 2014