The Co-Chairs of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Education both praised provisions of House Bill 1234, the General Appropriations bill that invests record funding in education.
Senators Clark Jolley, a Republican from Edmond, and Susan Paddack, a Democrat from Ada, said the GA bill serves as an appropriate blueprint to ensure critical services for all Oklahomans remain intact. Both senators provided input for negotiations in developing the base-level education funding contained in HB 1234, and said the bill is a product of sincere, bipartisan cooperation.
“This bill makes good on our promise to fund education first which is a crucial step in giving schools the resources they need that affect the quality of education Oklahoma children receive,” Paddack said. “It also includes full funding for the $3,000 pay raises for teachers passed last year, and provides money for another pay increase for next year.”
"We are proud that this bill funds education reforms, such as ACE and the Academic Achievement Awards, that boost performance and accountability in our public schools," Jolley said. "It also fully funds the OHLAP college scholarship program for Oklahoma high school students who stay out of trouble and keep their grades up."
Paddack and Jolley praised key education provisions included in HB 1234:
Meets the Fund Education First deadline for the first time.
-Funds the $3,000 teacher pay raise passed last year, and includes money for a new teacher pay increase next year.
-Provides full funding for the OHLAP college scholarship program for Oklahoma high school students.
-Funds the first phase of the ACE Initiative remediation courses, and increases funding for the Academic Achievement Awards.
Both senators hope the bipartisan legislation will be signed into law.