Oklahoma is 49th in education and every year the state legislature is setting us further behind. Many districts are now down to four-day school weeks, teachers are not earning a living wage and students are not receiving a quality education. Oklahoma also cut funding for additional training for classroom teachers. Our students and teachers shouldn’t bear the brunt of the legislature’s inability to prioritize education. Instead, Congress should step up to find opportunities for investment at the national level to make up for shortfalls within our state.
Beyond K-12 education, leaders in Washington should also make additional investments in Oklahoma education. The cost of a college education shouldn’t weigh students down for the rest of their lives. I’ll work to reduce interest rates on student loans to help decrease that burden and make college more accessible for all aspiring Oklahoma students. We should also provide families with opportunities to save for their children’s education free of taxes, such as 529 savings plans. We need to improve coordination between Washington and Oklahoma to ensure families have the best options possible for these investments.
We should protect and expand our partnership with the state's CareerTech system to provide job training and economic devolopment opportunities, including small and rural businesses. Over 80,000 jobs are open in Oklahoma simply because we don't have a skilled workforce to fill them.