Ironically, though HB3399 was signed by the Governor at the beginning of the month, and Dr. Janet Barresi, Oklahoma State Superintendent, experienced an historic defeat (an incumbent placing last in a political contest in OK) largely due to her support of Common Core, we are now facing yet another challenge in the fight against Common Core.

In the event you haven't heard, a handful of teachers (including the OEA/NEA teacher of the year - "liberals" according to Janet Barresi), parents and our own State Board of Education (minus Bill Price and Kathryn Franks) have filed a lawsuit to be heard by the Oklahoma Supreme Court July 14th at 10:30, to STOP the Common Core repeal.

Basically, the lawsuit asserts the role of the Oklahoma legislature in reviewing our new education standards (after creation in two years' time) is unconstitutional.  Please see my blog as to why this assertion is ludicrous and why this lawsuit could have far reaching ramifications on school choice and pre-K programming.  It could also chill the ability of your voice to be heard on any board, council or rule-making body by silencing the voice of the legislator, thereby promoting legislation via bureaucracy.  
 
ROPE has retained two separate attorneys to write Amicus briefs on behalf of all those who worked so hard to stop Common Core in Oklahoma.  We will be contacting you soon to ask for help in financing these actions.  In the meantime, we are asking you to write your own state Senator and Representative and ask them who will represent the state's interest in this lawsuit.  

Currently, the only attorneys of record are those representing the plaintiffs!  Why are there no attorneys representing the respondents; Senate Pro Temps Brian Bingman, Speaker of the House Jeff Hickman, the State of Oklahoma and the Oklahoma State Department of Education - the position that represents OUR interests?  Is this lawsuit to go unchallenged? The way we understand it, Amicus briefs and respondent responses are due in the court by JULY 9th!  We have no time to waste!

Here is a suggested letter:

Dear Senator/Representative,

June 5th, Governor Mary Fallin signed HB3399 - the repeal of the Common Core State Standards in Oklahoma - into law.  Currently, a challenge is being mounted against the bill in the Oklahoma Supreme Court.  With no representation listed for the respondents in the case, who will defend the interests of the state - OUR interests?  

As reflected by the overwhelming votes FOR HB3399 at the end of this session, Oklahomans DO NOT WANT Common Core.  Please ask how Oklahoma will be represented in this lawsuit and let me know.  This lawsuit is about more than Common Core.  If won, far reaching ramifications on school choice and pre-k programs in our state could be seen - as well as removing YOUR voice and the voice of the people - from any number of boards, councils and rule-making bodies.  It must be defended.

Thank you for your time and attention to this matter.

Sincerely, 

If you would like to address your Senator or Representative based on their vote on HB3399, you can find that here.

As usual, thank you for ALL you do for public education in Oklahoma.  Please look for a petition and a link to a funding site to be sent soon.  Don't forget...eternal vigilance is the price of freedom! 
 
Very Sincerely,

  

Jenni White
President
Restore Oklahoma Public Education