State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister testifies Wednesday before the House Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education.
Edworkforce Committee / Flickr (Public Domain)

Hofmeister Advocates For More Local Control In 'No Child Left Behind' Replacement

State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister went to Washington on Wednesday to testify before the House Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary and Secondary Education. Last year President Obama signed a replacement for the federal No Child Left Behind Act, which starts in the 2016/2017 school year. Lawmakers wanted to know what teachers and administrators need from the U.S. Department of Education as the law goes into effect, and Hofmeister said local control is key. “Hold us accountable for...
Read More

The heart of the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan is now on hold, after the Supreme Court granted a stay request that blocks the EPA from moving ahead with rules that would lower carbon emissions from the nation's power plants.

The case is scheduled to be argued in June, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. But a decision could be long in coming, particularly if the case winds up in the Supreme Court — meaning that the rules' fate might not be determined before a new presidential administration comes into power in 2017.

Chesapeake Energy's Losses Rattle Oklahoma Economy

Feb 9, 2016

The Oklahoma company Chesapeake Energy’s stock value plummeted Monday. Over the past year, the stock is down more than 90 percent.

Chesapeake is the second-largest natural gas extractor in the U.S. and a major employer in Oklahoma. Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson talks with Brian Hardzinski of KGOU in Oklahoma City about how Chesapeake Energy’s struggles are affecting Oklahoma’s economy.

KGOU listener Keith Gaddie and his bulldog, Georgia.
Keith Gaddie

It’s Mardi Gras - a day of indulgence, parades, zydeco, and a celebration of all things New Orleans during annual Carnival celebrations that originate with the Christian period between Epiphany and Lent.

KGOU (and our listeners) celebrated the season Sunday afternoon with The Weekend Bluesannual “Mardi Party” featuring music from the Crescent City and beyond.

Preston Doerflinger, Office of State Finance director, during a November 2011 tax credit task force meeting.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

State agencies will be dealing with even deeper cuts this fiscal year, on top of 3 percent reductions caused by Oklahoma’s revenue failure late in 2015.

On Monday, Finance Secretary Preston Doerflinger sent an email to agencies saying the cuts would double starting in March, eCapitol’s Shawn Ashley reports:

Poet Valzhyna Mort reading at the 2015 Neustadt Festival opening night, October 21, 2015.
Tyler Christian / World Literature Today (Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0)

Valzhyna Mort grew up in Belarus as the Soviet Union collapsed, and she’s spent her entire career using poetry to dispel misconceptions and bring her country out of Russia’s shadow.

“A great myth was that it was a really big reading nation, and I don’t know if it was really true, in terms of how much reading was done,” Mort told KGOU’s World Views. “But it’s certainly true that every household had a library. No matter what your parents did, how educated they were, you had a library.”

University of Oklahoma president David Boren
Brian Hardzinski / KGOU

University of Oklahoma president David Boren is recommending a 3 percent pay cut for himself, and OU vice presidents and deans for the upcoming fiscal year.

Boren said Monday the administrators affected by the pay cut have asked that the savings be used for need-based scholarships for students.

The corporate campus of Chesapeake Energy in Oklahoma City.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Chesapeake Energy says bankruptcy isn’t on the table despite Monday’s free fall of its stock price.

The Oklahoma City-based oil and natural gas giant’s stock dropped 50 percent at one point during Monday morning trading due to media reports it hired restructuring attorneys.

Oklahoma Watch executive editor David Fritze, Oklahoma Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services commissioner Terri White, and Oklahoma Health Care Authority CEO Nico Gomez.
Patrick Roberts / KGOU

At the Oklahoma Watch-Out public forum last month, two prominent state health officials described the impact the state budget crisis and the oil-and-gas downturn could have on residents' physical and mental health.

As the Legislature prepares to assemble in February, the state’s two primary agencies that deal with health care for the impoverished and the mentally ill are bracing for cuts to services. At the same time, losses of jobs threaten to strain physical and emotional health for families at all income levels.

Gov. Mary Fallin enters the House chamber to deliver her "State of the State" address on Feb. 1. Political observers say she will need to work intensely behind the scenes to succeed in pushing through the revenue-raising measures she proposed.
Michael Willmus / Oklahoma Watch

Gov. Mary Fallin to Oklahoma lawmakers: We need hundreds of millions of dollars, fast. Here are my ideas. What have you got?

That’s not exactly how Fallin put it in her State of the State address to the Legislature on Feb. 1. But it’s the essence of what she said, according to several officials and analysts asked to assess the governor’s response to Oklahoma’s fiscal crisis.

President Obama talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during the 70th United Nations General Assembly Sept. 28, 2015.
Pete Souza / The White House

In the wake of Russian aggression in the region, President Obama announced Wednesday that he will be strengthening America’s military presence in Eastern Europe.

"As we approach the 2016 NATO Summit in Warsaw, it is clear that the United States and our allies must do more to advance our common defense in support of a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace," President Obama said in a statement.

Pages