OKCPS Releases Data Used In Decision To Close Schools

Monday, January 7th 2019, 5:43 pm
By: Dana Hertneky

Oklahoma City Public Schools will need to close some schools, the district's superintendent said.

Now, the district has revealed all information they will use to pick which schools to shutter. 

Superintendent Sean McDaniel said this is necessary because enrollment is down. That means they will be getting less money from the state, and right now, the money they do have needs to be spent on students and not facilities, he said.

Closing schools has been a historically emotional issue in Oklahoma City. So much so that despite several proposals over several years, the district is still operating about 60 percent capacity.

“The difference between those and this is this is set out with a set of criteria,” said school board member Mark Mann.  “A vision that we need to be good stewards of our resources.”

This time around, the district will be looking at data from 10 areas to make a decision. 

Most recently, the district released information in three of those areas:

  1. Academic Performance: state test scores and graduation rates.
  2. Community Services: what role the school plays in the neighborhood beyond basic education.
  3. Program Considerations: the opportunities the school offers to help students connect with their schools and teachers.

The data from the other areas such as demographics and location were previously released.  All of the information will be used to formulate three plans that will be presented to the school board on January 22.

“My assumption is every school in the district will be effected by this plan in some way,” said Mann.

The public will have an opportunity to weigh in in a series of community meetings, and then in mid-March, McDaniel will make a recommendation.  The changes will take place next school year.

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