The number of out-of-state students attending Oklahoma’s public universities and colleges has more than doubled in just over a decade as schools increasingly rely on nonresident tuition to supplement their budgets.
From 2000 to 2013, the number of nonresident undergraduate students enrolled in public colleges and universities jumped to 22,169 from 10,129, an increase of 119 percent. The nonresidents hail from all 50 states. Nearly half of them are Texans.
In-state enrollment rose by 12 percent, to 135,842, according to data obtained from the State Regents for Higher Education and analyzed byOklahoma Watch. That rate matched state population growth.
The portion of what colleges call their “educational and general primary budgets” provided by out-of-state tuition also jumped significantly over the 13-year period. The enrollment figures do not include graduate or international students.
Efforts are underway to place initiatives involving storm shelters and marijuana sales on this November's ballot.
Whether this year's measures would help one candidate or party is unclear. A cockfighting initiative on the 2002 ballot drew large numbers of rural Democrats to the polls, and that was the year an underdog Democratic state senator from Shawnee named Brad Henry won the governor's race.
Henry won with 43.3% of the vote, compared to Republican Steve Largent with 41.6% and conservative independent Gary Richardson with 14.1%.
Ballot initiatives must be submitted 60 days for inclusion on the ballot, so both petitions must be submitted by September 5th. Oklahoma ballot initiatives have 90 days to gather all signatures, and at the latest must be submitted 60 days before an election -- in this case, September 5th. The medical marijuana initiative began June 3rd. The recreational marijuana initiative began June 16th. The storm shelter initiative began July 2nd.
The Oklahoma Department of Health is urging parents to avoid the last-minute scramble and long lines by getting their children's birth certificates now as they prepare to enroll their children in school.
Health Department officials say many parents wait to obtain the birth certificates until August, which is typically the busiest time to obtain them. Parents can avoid the rush and by contacting facilities in Oklahoma City, Tulsa or McAlester to obtain their children's birth records.
Dr. Dolores Bigfoot is one of the authors of the article Cultural Enhancement of Mental Health Services for American Indian Children found in the spring 2014 edition of the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children (APSAC). Bigfoot explains how age-old ceremonies and values from tribal life can help abused native children today.
Hearings for thousands of injured workers will be delayed this month while the state's workers compensation system is split into two agencies— each with its own staff, offices and equipment.
Hearings scheduled in the state's workers compensation courts in Tulsa and Oklahoma City between July 21 and Aug. 1 have been postponed and will be rescheduled, according to letters from the court to attorneys.
Court Administrator Michael Harkey told the Tulsa World that he did not know how many cases were affected.
Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt's office says the ballot title of an initiative petition to build storm shelters in public schools complies with state law.
Pruitt's office had five days from the date the petition was filed to make any changes needed to the ballot title. The office submitted a letter to the Secretary of State's Office Thursday that says the ballot title for State Question 774 complies with applicable laws.