Hope you all had a wonderful holiday with family and friends! I’m very happy to announce our first OKC AreaPLAC meeting will be this Thursday, November 29 at 10:00 am. (Meeting Details here). Edmond Public Schools will host the meeting, and all OKC area districts are invited to attend. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the education issues we will likely see this Legislative Session: funding, testing, local control issues, and vouchers. These discussions are very important, and it will take the voice of everyone: teachers, administrators, parents, and local school boards to be heard.
Vouchers: If you did not read the coverage of the Supreme Court’s decision on the Lindsay Nicole Henry Scholarship, here is the TW article and Editorial. The Court did not rule on the constitutional issue merit of the case. Rather, the Court determined school districts could not bring this suit. It is highly likely that a new lawsuit will be filed, despite the confidence of the law’s author and the State Superintendent that the issue is now settled.
Until the constitutionality issue is addressed we will continue to see voucher legislation introduced for certain groups of students. One such example currently being discussed in Oklahoma is a voucher for parents to immediately transfer their child to a private school, if they believe their child has been bullied. Bullying should not be tolerated in any way, and every school district in Oklahoma is required by law to have bullying policies that are set by citizen-elected local Boards of Education. Bullying is a terrible, societal problem which will be effectively remedied by people (specifically, students and parents), not policy. However, as we have seen in the past- those who support funds designated for public education going to private schools will continue to make that their priority.
We are truly fortunate to live in a country which provides a public education for all students, and we are thankful for those who speak out to defend that opportunity for their own children, and others.