Budget Agreement Reached

Gosh it feels good to report this: a budget agreement between the House, Senate and the governor has been reached, and it’s one that increases education funding, state savings, rural health care services, agriculture and public safety and fully funds state infrastructure projects while promoting jobs and healthy economic growth – all without raising additional taxes.

This budget devotes about $203 million to education – from preK to college and CareerTech. We are giving teachers a raise of about $1,220. For years we’ve heard about the need to increase teacher pay, so we’ve done that both last year and this, bringing our teacher pay rate to the top in the region. This will keep our teachers from leaving for other states and will help us retain and recruit more traditionally certified teachers for our public school classrooms. This pay raise is going to go to teachers in schools that are on the funding formula, which is 97 percent of Oklahoma teachers. Those schools that are off the funding formula will still be encouraged to give their teachers this raise as well. I believe all teachers in Oklahoma should receive this raise.

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The Okeene Record

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