OK Policy announces its 2021 policy priority areas

OK Policy has announced its 2021 legislative priorities, focusing on policy initiatives to help Oklahomans live healthier, create thriving families, and develop safe communities.  “Even before COVID-19 struck, far too many Oklahoma families and communities were struggling to provide and… Read more [More...]

Oklahoma schools should use federal Education Stabilization Funds to mitigate learning loss for low-income students

Additional federal dollars should be used to support low-income students through extended instructional time, lower student-to-staff ratios, and other initiatives. Such investments will prevent the COVID-19 slide from widening academic disparities even further. [More...]

Support staff pay raise and restoring cuts is key to improving Oklahoma’s schools

[Image Source: U.S. Department of Education / Flickr] Oklahoma schools don't have enough support staff to meet needs, and their salaries are far too low averaging just $21,583 a year. While HB 1010xx gave support professionals a $1,250 pay raise, it was well short of the $5,000 they asked for. This session, education support professionals must be a bigger part of our conversations about how to better serve Oklahoma's schools. [More...]

Kicking the can down the road: How inadequate funding dismantles data-driven education reform

There is a saying that “what gets measured, gets done,” and in 1990, our state Legislature seemed to understand this adage. That year, they passed HB 1017, which dedicated $560 million dollars over five years to implement historic education reforms including class size reduction, curriculum standards, testing, and early childhood programs. Since that time, state funding gains have severely eroded, and Oklahoma has not been able to maintain many aspects of HB 1017 including class size limits. [More...]

Issue Brief: Community Eligibility Can Help Make Oklahoma Schools Hunger-Free

With the Community Eligibility Provision, participating schools can eliminate school meals paperwork and serve all students at no charge. Our report explains the program’s benefits and how it works, as well as its potential for Oklahoma schools... Read more [More...]

Early Childhood Fiscal Map

For a project funded by Smart Start Oklahoma, Oklahoma Policy Institute developed a fiscal map of the federal, state, local, and private supports for young children in our state. Read more... [More...]