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 res...
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$20 bills
Brian Hardzinski / KGOU

Oklahoma’s junior U.S. Senator wants to remove Andrew Jackson from the $20 bill, citing the seventh president’s policies of the forced relocation of millions of Native Americans from their ancestral homeland.

two gay men holding hands
Alan Light / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Four stories that were trending or generated discussion online or on KGOU’s social media platforms during the past week.

student in a classroom using a laptop computer
Jacob McCleland / KGOU

The State Board of Education signed off on Oklahoma’s new English Language Arts and Math standards during Thursday’s meeting. They now await the approval of state lawmakers.

The Board was tasked with creating new math and English standards after the Oklahoma legislature repealed the Common Core curriculum in 2014.

The new standards were created by a group of Oklahoma educators from school districts across the state, and higher education. They were revised four times, before approval.

Gov. Mary Fallin and Secretary of Energy and Environment Michael Teague at the Governor's Energy Conference September 4, 2014 in Oklahoma CIty.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Gov. Mary Fallin on Thursday approved the transfer of nearly $1.4 million from the state emergency fund to strengthen Oklahoma’s earthquake response.

The money is going to a pair of agencies tasked with researching the earthquake surge and regulating the oil and gas activities likely causing it.

Taiwan's president-elect Tsai Ing-wen
CSIS | Center for Strategic & International Studies / Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Earlier this month Taiwan elected its first female president in a historic general election that also saw a party other than the Kuomintang, or KMT, take over for only the second time since the Chinese Nationalists were driven from the mainland to the island by the Chinese Communists following the 1949 civil war.

President-elect Tsai Ing-wen leads the Democratic Progressive Party, or DPP. Historically, they've been a pro-Independence party, seeking to establish Taiwan as a truly unique nation rather than a state-in-exile.

Brent Fuchs / The Journal Record

Two Oklahoma energy companies announced key business decisions this – one took on more debt, and the other cut spending by $1 billion.

It’s been a rocky few months for SandRidge Energy – the company’s stock has been delisted from the New York Stock Exchange, and has been in a dispute with the Oklahoma Corporation Commission over compliance with wastewater directives in earthquake-prone areas. On Monday, the Oklahoma City-based company announced it would borrow $488 million to pay for general corporate operations.

woman, women, working, women in the work place, working women
eflon / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

State Rep. Emily Virgin, D-Norman, is pushing a bill this session designed to close the pay gap between men and women. She says women in Oklahoma make an average of just 73 percent of what their male counterparts do.

“That's not including minority women,” Virgin said. “Latina women make 55 cents on the dollar for men. And Native American women and African-American women are at 63 to 65 cents."

The Bizzell Memorial Library at the University of Oklahoma
Brian Hardzinski / KGOU

The University of Oklahoma Board of Regents unanimously approved a $20 million budget reduction plan Thursday morning.

In his proposal, President David Boren says OU has absorbed more than $80 million dollars in cuts and unfunded fixed cost increases since 2008.

The proposal includes a voluntarily retirement incentive that's expected to save $10 million. The other $10 million would come from eliminating vacant faculty and staff positions, and reducing purchasing and travel expenses in department budgets.

Jet Stein with the OWRB's lake monitoring program prepares to test the water at Lake Hefner in Oklahoma City.
Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

Water contaminated by algae blooms or choked by sediment and pollutants kills wildlife and isn’t healthy for humans. It’s up to the state to make sure Oklahoma’s lakes and rivers are safe, but budget cuts are threatening that mission, officials say.

Water Funding Roller Coaster

Craftsmen in Paris work on the construction of the Statue of Liberty.
National Park Service

In 1777, a 19-year-old French aristocrat arrived on the eastern shores of an infant nation and forever changed the course of United States history. Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette received a commission as a major general in the Continental Army, and played a key military role in battles at Brandywine, in Rhode Island, and at the eventual British surrender at Yorktown. His participation in the American Revolution entrenched France’s status as the oldest U.S. ally.

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