by Steve Fair
(1) The educational attainment of the state's population over age 25 in the year 2000 was as follows: College degree- 26%, High School Diploma/Some College- 55%, Less than a High School Diploma- 19%. Oklahoma lags behind the rest of the country in educational attainment. While 84% of the total US population completes high school, only 81% get their high school diploma in Oklahoma. The drop out rate in Oklahoma is higher than the national average and the highest in our region.
In the past, several forward thinking legislators- all Republicans- have proposed school districts “share” administration. This would allow smaller districts to “share a superintendent or principal instead of bearing the entire expense of a full time administrator. There was no mandating of “sharing.” It was totally voluntary and gave the option to the school districts. That seems like a reasonable solution to district funding shortfalls and to increase efficiency in education. Sharing administration would seem to be a viable alternative to the dreaded possibility of consolidation, but every time the bill came up, it’s was batted down by the education lobby.
Profiles 2006 reveal some statistics that should be of great concern to all Oklahomans- particularly those with children in the public school system. I would urge you to read the entire report, particularly the report on your local district.