2020-21 OASA Legislative Goals
OASA Approved November 11, 2020
1. FUNDING: OASA supports raising new recurring revenue that will provide a long term and sustainable funding plan for public schools in Oklahoma. Funding should include operational money to support regionally competitive teacher pay and professional development, to lower class sizes, to support social and emotional needs of Oklahoma public school students by funding additional support staff, including but not limited to additional academic and mental health counselors, to reflect a modernization of the transportation factor, and to provide a safe environment for students to be successful. We support a fair and equitable funding formula for all full-time virtual students. We oppose any efforts to divert public funds to non-public schools. We support the distribution of future COVID relief funding through the state aid formula.
A. Student: OASA supports the continued development and implementation of accountability measures that are research-based, multi-criteria indicators of student growth.
B. District: OASA supports legislation that will standardize student transfer statutes and teacher contracts, as well as provide financial transparency for all schools that receive public funding. We support legislation that standardizes attendance/engagement for full time virtual students. We support flexibility in state testing scheduled spring 2021 including, but not limited, to an ESSA waiver.
3. ACADEMICS: OASA supports an equitable, standardized, and universally fully funded tuition and fee schedule for 9-12 grade students concurrently enrolled in higher education courses that support students in meeting their Individual Career Academic Plans (ICAP). OASA supports equal access to concurrent enrollment coursework for all Oklahoma 9th-12th grade students as determined by local education partnerships, including access to Career Technology Centers programs. We support a partnership with higher education that allows certified school teachers to teach “0” level coursework that would count as concurrent enrollment for students. We support expanding opportunities and flexibility for enrollment options for early college high schools for all students.
4. EMPLOYEES: OASA supports legislative changes to assist with solving the current teacher shortage by removing barriers, protecting benefits, and improving compensation for current, future and retired education employees (removing the cap for retired teachers to return to work). We support development, training and mentoring of non-traditional teachers. We support funding to keep teacher salaries regionally competitive. We believe that the (state/federal) bus driver certification process must be revamped to address the bus driver shortage by removing unnecessary barriers.
5. LOCAL CONCERNS: OASA opposes any legislation that would remove educational decisions from locally elected Boards of Education. We support the expansion of charter schools ONLY with the approval of the local board of education.
6. FEDERAL: OASA supports AASA federal goals for public education including the guiding principles for federal education policy that stem from equity and the important role the federal government stands to play in leveling the education playing field for all students, ensuring an appropriate Federal/State/Local balance, supporting students, families and special populations (for example IDEA and Impact Aid funding), supporting personnel, strengthening district operations (reduce federal paperwork and provide flexibility), supporting students through appropriate curriculum and assessments, and enhancing district technology infrastructure and student data privacy. We support future COVID relief funding with distribution flexibility through the state’s state aid formula (AARA stabilization monies were distributed this way a few years ago). We support internet access and devices for all students to provide equity in access to innovative instruction.