Oklahoma Higher Education Policy Updates for NCTE
Monday, June 30, 2014
National Association of State Boards of Ed Sues OK
In Oklahoma, where Gov. Mary Fallin (R), recently repealed the controversial nationalized standards, petitioners organized by the National Associations of State Boards of Education (NASBE) have sued, arguing that the repeal of the Common Core standards is unconstitutional under Oklahoma state law.
Celina Durgin at National Review Online explains:
The plaintiffs take issue with a provision in House Bill 3399 allowing the state legislature to be involved in drafting new standards to replace Common Core, a power they argue belongs to the Oklahoma state Board of Education. The bill’s proponents say its repeal is consistent with the precedent that let the Oklahoma legislature adopt Common Core standards in the first place in 2010.
Jenni White, organizer of Restore Oklahoma Public Education (R.O.P.E.) writes at the group’s website, “The lawsuit alleges that the legislature is encroaching on the right of the state school board to supervise instruction in public schools by allowing the legislature to review and modify state educational standards if that is deemed necessary by the citizens of Oklahoma.”
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan lambasted Oklahoma Monday after the state repealed itsCommon Coreacademic standards, saying “other states locally are out-educating Oklahoma.”
“The Oklahoma example is a pretty interesting one,” said Duncan. “Just to give you a couple facts — and I think sadly, this is not about education; this is about politics. So in Oklahoma, about 40 percent of high school graduates — these are not the dropouts — 40 percent of high school graduates have to take remedial classes when they go to college. Why? Because they weren’t ready.”
Oklahoma will continue using its Priority Academic Student Skills standards, which many educators consider less rigorous than Common Core, before switching to new standards in 2016.
State funding declines impact tuition and student loan debt in Oklahoma
Expenditures of the Oklahoma public higher education system generate$9.2 billionin economic output impacts in the state and support more than85,000Oklahoma jobs.
The estimated return on investment for Oklahoma public higher education is$4.72for every $1 of state funding.
Enrollment at near-record levels continues, with more than186,000students enrolled for academic year 2013.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce ranks Oklahoma higher education No. 7 in affordability and No. 8 in efficiency nationally.
COMPLETE COLLEGE AMERICA http://completecollege.org/
FY 2014 Oklahoma Appropriation: $988,549,007
Total FY 2015 State Appropriation: $1,064,849,007
Percent Difference From FY 2013 State Appropriation: 7.7 percent
Goals: To provide increased access to degree completion, including certificates. Focus is on readiness, rewarding performance outside of school, and providing remediation, especially to returning or first time adult learners. This effort cuts across all types of institutions, including community colleges and technical programs. In addition, interventions are encouraged that will increase grants, career counseling, veterans services and financial education.