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Oklahoma public school deregulation measures advance

The bills propose removing many unfunded state mandates. A House committee passed both measures.
BY MICHAEL MCNUTT Modified: February 26, 2013 at 9:27 pm •  Published: February 26, 2013

Many standards are kept in the bill, including the minimum salary schedule; participation in the teacher retirement system; use of the state health insurance plan; background checks; teacher evaluations; teacher certifications; payroll deductions; administrator certification and school board training; and graduation requirements.

Mandates that school districts would be allowed to ignore include class size limits, alternative education options, hiring of guidance counselors and public input on changes to school board policies.

The committee also approved HB 2087, which is similar to HB 2131 except that school districts would voluntarily seek to be exempted from certain mandates. The Board of Education would grant final approval.

HB 2087, which passed 12-5, and HB 2131 now go to the House Calendar Committee, which will decide whether they will be given a hearing on the House floor.