Senator Susan Paddack, a Democrat from Ada, said she is pleased a measure that will bring more accountability to Oklahoma classrooms won the approval of a Senate panel earlier today.
“If we want Oklahoma to be even more successful, we must offer our children the best education possible,” Paddack said. “And that means making Oklahoma classrooms more accountable through end of instruction testing and through additional support for students to achieve their maximum potential.”
Paddack, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Education and Majority Whip in the Senate, said the educational accountability reforms contained in SB 1792 are a reflection of the work of the Governor’s Achieving Classroom Excellence (ACE) Task Force. The Task Force is made up of stakeholders throughout the educational community such as educators, parents, administrators and state and local elected officials.
“I believe Oklahomans want an education system that promotes personal responsibility and accountability,” Paddack said. “The provisions of SB 1792 sets standards of excellence which will help our students to compete in today’s growing global economy.”
Paddack said the investment made to education through high stakes testing means a brighter economic future for all Oklahomans.
“Economic development begins with bold investments to Oklahoma’s education system, and these recommendations are a step in the right direction,” Paddack said. “Businesses that are looking to relocate to our state will see that we are committed to enhancing education in Oklahoma. This will lead to better paying jobs in our state. Most importantly we are doing all we can to help our students receive the best education possible.”
Paddack said the Oklahoma State Senate is working hard this session to pass legislation that highlights the commitment to excellence in Oklahoma classrooms. She said today’s vote on the ACE Task Force recommendations is the latest measure to pass through the Democratic controlled Senate.
She said the Senate has already passed a bill that will give all Oklahoma teachers a $3000 pay raise, a stipend increase for teachers who serve as mentor teachers and for those who are nationally board certified. In addition to the teacher pay raises, the Senate also passed a measure that will expand the Oklahoma Higher Access Learning Program to include more middle class families by increasing the income requirement from $50,000 a year to $75,000 a year.
“In the Senate, we are committed to passing legislation that reflects the value we place in Oklahoma’s next generation,” Paddack said. “Through the passage of SB 1792, we are making a commitment to help Oklahoma classrooms set a standard of excellence that will be the roadmap for a brighter future for all Oklahomans.