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Fifteen bills StateImpact is watching in the 2019 Oklahoma legislature

With a huge freshman class and a promise for less gridlock, Oklahoma lawmakers filed more than 2,800 bills this legislative session. With a third of the session now over, the StateImpact team has an update on some bills we’re following.

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The ‘trade-ups’ and trade-offs of consolidating Oklahoma’s largest school district

Oklahoma City is growing, but student enrollment in district schools is on the decline. The distribution isn’t felt evenly, and some schools are overcrowded while others are operating at less than half capacity. District officials estimate they spend $2.4 million heating and cooling empty buildings each year.

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Years after charter school divided rural community, some see broken promises while others note academic progress

Two years ago the Oklahoma State Board of Education exercised its authority to approve a rural charter school for the first time. This decision was a contentious one. By approving the charter’s application, the state board had overturned a local board’s decision to deny it, leaving some wondering who’s really in control.

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Decline in school arts programs follows funding drop, but cuts aren’t equally felt

In 2018, nearly 30 percent of Oklahoma students went to a school with no music, dance or visual art education.

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A preview of the big issues StateImpact is watching in 2019

Here’s a roundup of some of the biggest policy issues on deck for the upcoming year and legislative session.

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The surprising design of a new Tulsa park, where children learn by escaping adults and facing obstacles

On the surface, Tulsa’s spectacular new park looks just like a fancy playground. But it was actually intentionally designed to help kids learn important life skills through play.

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