Federal funding increases are making quality child care more affordable for Oklahoma families

A new report from Oklahoma Policy Institute finds that new federal grant funding is making affordable child care a reality for more Oklahomans. [More...]

Expansion in Federal Funding is Improving Access and Quality in Oklahoma’s Child Care Subsidy Program

In fiscal year 2019, Oklahoma’s child care subsidy program operated by the Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) received a $32 million increase in federal funding, which represents a 36 percent increase from the previous year. With Oklahoma continuing its state commitment to the subsidy program, OKDHS was able to significantly improve provider rates, invest in training for providers, and reduce costs and expand eligibility for Oklahoma families. [More...]

New KIDS COUNT Data Book ranks Oklahoma in bottom 10 states for child well-being

How Oklahoma Ranks Oklahoma ranks in the bottom 10 states in the nation for child well-being, according to the 2019 KIDS COUNT® Data Book released today by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. With an overall ranking of 42nd out of all 50 states,… Read more [More...]

FY 2020 Budget Highlights

Without accounting for inflation, next year’s appropriations will be the largest in state history, surpassing the $7.567 billion budget in FY 2019. When adjusted for inflation, next year’s budget remains 10.2 percent below the budget of FY 2009 and 14.9 percent less than the peak year of FY 2007. [More...]

End of Session Education Round-Up: Steady steps forward

Image Credit: US Department of Education / Flickr While the 2019 legislative session was not as attention-grabbing as last year, public education still claimed a number of victories this session. [More...]

OKPolicyCast 49: Black Wall Street Times (with Nehemiah Frank)

In this episode I spoke to Nehemiah Frank. Nehemiah is the founder and executive editor of The Black Wall Street Times, an online newspaper that covers news relevant to the black community in Tulsa and social justice issues affecting all Tulsans and Oklahomans. [More...]

Budget Overview: The rebuilding project continues

Overall, it's best to think of this budget as a second step on what needs to be a long journey. When adjusted for inflation, this budget is still 10.1 percent  below the FY 2009 level. Over half of state agencies still have lower budgets than they did in FY 2009 without accounting for inflation. [More...]

Increased federal funding gives child subsidy a much-needed boost

Parents who seek child care for infants and toddlers face a common conundrum. Without child care parents cannot work, yet many working families cannot afford the costly child care they need to maintain employment. This is why helping families who earn low-incomes get access to quality child care is so important. [More...]

Missed opportunities to address disparities in student discipline

Students with disabilities in Oklahoma public schools have experienced disproportionately high rates of exclusionary discipline, such as corporal punishment and suspension, compared to students without disabilities. [More...]

Changes to scholarship tax credit bill would divert even more dollars from public education

While intended to address concerns with the original version, the latest changes to the scholarship tax credit legislation are even more harmful. In addition to diverting more tax dollars away from public services, the revisions also dilute the fiscal impact of donations to public school foundations and create unfair advantages for some nonprofits. [More...]