The Norman Transcript

University

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
University
  • Gaylord to get $35,000 grant for poverty project

    A team from Gaylord College is among the first winners in a national competition to fund innovative news experiments that serve communities, the Online News Association has announced....

    April 19, 2014

  • Singing Sooners show set

    The University of Oklahoma School of Music presents the Singing Sooners Spring Show at 8 p.m. Friday, April 25 in the Sharp Concert Hall, Catlett Music Center. Jim Graves and Stephen Ziegler serve as directors for the group....

    April 19, 2014

  • Symposium speaker Paul Polik: Commerce can help and bring millions out of poverty

    How to harness the power of commerce to address social and environmental challenges in sustainable ways was the topic of discussion at the University of Oklahoma Center for the Creation of Economic Wealth’s fourth annual Social ...

    April 18, 2014

  • OU Hornsemble goes to the movies

    The OU Hornsemble will present a concert of music from the cinema at 6 p.m. April 27 in the Paul F. Sharp Concert Hall. Billed as “Movie-Time Music,” the ensemble will present a wide variety of cinematic music from the 1940s to the ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Human Rights Artist, activist-in-residence uses art to enlighten society

    La Puerta del Mileno, the Millennium Door, attempts to beckon travelers into the city walls of Ciudad Juarez, but the steel beams are abruptly interrupted as they reach for the sky by the eye of a child who sees the underlying message: the ...

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • OU Staff Week to include daily activities

    The University of Oklahoma Norman campus Staff Week, set April 21-25, will feature many activities. The theme is “OU Staff: The Real Superheroes.” Donations of canned food for Food and Shelter may be brought to all activities except the ...

    April 17, 2014

  • OU History of Science Department receives Sloan Foundation Grant

    The University of Oklahoma History of Science Department has received a $350,000 grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation in support of a project to build an innovative tool for collaborative research centered on the 100-year-old Isis ...

    April 16, 2014

  • Oklahoma Water Survey data web portal to be demonstrated next week

    A new tool is available from the Oklahoma Water Survey, at the University of Oklahoma, for organizations in the state that collect and use water data. Oklahoma Water Survey Director Robert Puls will demonstrate Phase I of a new water data ...

    April 16, 2014

  • Courses bring unprecedented enrollment

    University students majoring in engineering, science and mathematics typically enroll in college-level computer courses, like computational thinking and computer programming. Now, with Janux online courses offered at the University of ...

    April 15, 2014

  • Leaders, industry experts discuss U.S. energy security and its impact around world

    Intellectual dialogue was sparked Thursday between students, professors and industry experts about the impact of the U.S.’s increasing energy supply at the Price College of Business Energy Institute’s Energy Symposium. The Symposium, ...

    April 11, 2014