Education bills pass Senate

The Oklahoma Senate approved several education related bills, including measures that address teacher pay, teacher recruitment, and the reduction of administrative costs, among other issues.

Sen.  Gary Stanislawski, chairman of the Senate Education Committee, authored Senate Bill 618, which modifies the minimum salary schedule and increases pay for classroom teachers.

“Our teachers are so important to us in this state and to the families throughout Oklahoma.  We need to continue to push forward to let our message be heard that we support our teachers and we would like to give them a pay raise.  Does that mean that we’re going to get everything we want this year?  Maybe not, but it’s so important. We have to keep pushing,” said Stanislawski, R-Tulsa.

Among the other  education measures approved by the Senate were:

  • SB 514 (Stanislawski) requires the Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE) to study shared administrative services of school districts in the state in the hopes of reducing administrative costs.
  • SB 243 (Stanislawski) requires a monthly financial report to be prepared by the local school’s treasurer and sent to the local school board.
  • SB 244 (Stanislawski) requires virtual charter schools to track attendance.
  • SB 389 (Stanislawski) requires the State Board of Education to review and send a report to legislative leadership on pupil grade level weights every five years.
  • SB 515 (Stanislawski) modifies the point system in determining a school’s grade on the state A-F report card system.
  • SB 445 (Sen. Joe Newhouse, R-Broken Arrow) increases flexibility within existing tax credits related to the Oklahoma Equal Opportunity Education Scholarship Act to better serve low-income and high-needs students.
  • Senate Joint Resolution 9 (Sen. Nathan Dahm, R-Broken Arrow) increases civics education by requiring OSDE to incorporate a citizenship test into the standards for grades 9-12.