Student Advisory Council tackles tough issues facing public education

OKLAHOMA CITY (Jan. 14, 2016) – The Oklahoma State Department of Education held its initial Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council Thursday. Sixty-seven students from across the state came together at the State Capitol to voice their concerns about the state of public education in Oklahoma.

Superintendent Hofmeister listens to a student from the OSDE Student Advisory Council speak.

“This is a remarkable group of young men and women,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister. “In such trying times, these are some of the most important voices we need to be listening to. I look forward to working with this group more closely and am excited the conversation has begun. Everything we are doing is for students, so we need to actually listen to students.”

All members of the council were nominated by the superintendents of their districts and came to the meeting prepared to discuss their top concerns for public education in Oklahoma. One main topic in Thursday’s meeting was end-of-instruction exams. Many students said teachers need more flexibility. 

“We’re missing out on learning some great life skills because our teachers are teaching for a test and not always teaching what we need and want to learn,” said Ellen Roth, a senior at Ponca City High School.  

Bullying and teacher pay were other hot topics students Terin Brownen of Weatherford High School and Aaron Foreman of Midwest City High School were eager to voice their opinions on. 

“We need to set examples at our own schools that bullying is not cool,” said Brownen. “Let the bullies know you won’t put up with it.” 

“We lost one of our best teachers this year to another profession,” said Foreman. “Teacher pay and how teachers are treated should be the topic of conversation everywhere.” 

The Student Advisory Council will meet again this spring.

For a complete list of students, their high schools, and their districts, click here.

Click here for photos from the Student Advisory Council meeting available for media use.



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Last updated on January 14, 2016