OKCPS Shows Strong Opposition To Proposed Voucher Bill

Thursday, March 10th 2022, 9:51 am


Oklahoma City Public Schools and the Oklahoma Education Association are fighting a voucher bill that would send public school funds to private schools.

Oklahoma Education Association leaders took a poll to find out how parents feel about it.

According to the OEA, the poll results were released by the Oklahoma Education Coalition.

The scientific poll was conducted between Feb. 28 and March 3 by The Tarrance Group.

Of the parents who participated, 61% of them do not want state tax dollars going to private schools.

According to the OEA, the poll found high percentages of opposition to vouchers among all subgroups including the following.

66% of rural voters, 70% of urban voters, 72% of suburban voters, 65% of Independents, 86% of Democrats and 59% of Republicans.

Senate Bill 1647 would give parents their child's state appropriated money and they could use it to pay for private school if they choose.

Supporters believe the bill would give families more learning options

The bill's author, Senator Greg Treat (R) said,

"Giving parents control of the money for their children's education is the essence of this bill."

OKCPS Superintendent Sean McDaniel says the district is not opposed to educational choices but worries losing funding will hurt the nearly 700,000 public school students in Oklahoma.

"I don't know everything but I do know that I don't like anything about this voucher bill." said McDaniel

A few changes have been made to the bill since it was written, such as homeschool parents no longer qualify.

The title of the measure is also stricken, which means we can expect to see more changes. 

We'll see the proposal next on the Senate Floor at the state Capitol, but no word yet on when.

Information on the polling from the Oklahoma Education Association can be found here.