The Supreme Court of Oklahoma has spoken. Teachers will get their pay raises as scheduled. Any doubt as to whether House Bill 1023xx (the “teacher pay raise” bill) would be affected by a vote to repeal House Bill 1010xx (the revenue-raising bill) was resolved in the fifth paragraph of the Court’s ruling:
¶5 Some of the revenue raised by HB 1010xx was evidently intended to provide the funding source for increases to teacher compensation found in another bill passed during the second special session, HB 1023xx. HB 1023xx, often referred to as the "teacher pay raise" bill, was made explicitly contingent on the "enactment" of HB 1010xx. The parties to
this protest have raised questions concerning what effect a referendum petition against HB 1010xx might have on the effectiveness of HB 1023xx. The answer is none. Okla. Const. art. 5, § 3 provides that any measure referred to the people shall not take effect until approved by a majority. HB 1023xx was not made contingent on HB 1010xx's effectiveness, however, but rather on its enactment. A bill is enacted (and becomes an enactment) when it is passed by the Legislature and all of the formalities required to make it a law have been performed. As this Court implied in, the process of enactment is completed prior to any referendum on the subject enactment. at ¶¶20-25. HB 1010xx has been enacted. The
contingency requirement of HB 1023xx has been met, and it will become effective on its specified date.
Unfortunately, it’s that time of year when we get to administer end-of-year tests. I know many schools have gone Google and are using Chrome devices in their district. If this is you and you’re wanting to test on your Chrome devices, you can!
It’s news to no one that our public schools face enormous challenges in virtually every area of operations, including finances. Oklahoma education funding is one of the lowest in the nation and yet mandates remain, leaving schools without the proper resources to support them.
I get it. Opening up social media sites on your district’s network can be scary and overwhelming, especially with the constant reports about online bullying and inappropriate communication between educators and students. But what is equally concerning to me is knowing that our students use unrestricted social media and other communication tools anyway, many without supervision, guidance and no understanding of their content’s ramifications.
House Bill 1023 of the Oklahoma Legislature's 2nd Extraordinary Session gives us several considerations to take into account in the early preparation of budgets. The biggest consideration will be working within the currently passed law.