Episode 039: Legislative Update 8

This episode of Passing Notes Todd, Shari, and I focused on other systems that impact education because it is not enough to fully fund education. We cover healthcare, criminal justice, DHS, and how all three intersect with education. To sum it up, if we are going to be a top 10 state, Oklahomans need to care for Oklahomans and our policies need to be reflective of the Oklahoman Standard.

Find Todd on Twitter @MrGragg and Shari @ShariGateley.

Episode 035: Legislative Update 6

Another #okleg update with Todd Gragg and Shari Gateley. In this episode we talk about innovation and local control.

We all know that the April 1 deadline to pass education funding will probably come and go so we made bets on when we actually the budget will be finalized and sent to the governor. Shari claimed April 24, Todd picked May 8, and I went for the middle with May 1. We’ll see what happens as the legislative session continues.

You can find Todd on Twitter @MrGragg and Shari @ShariGateley

Episode 020: The Election Episode

Elections are upon us! Early Voting begins today (11/1/18) and lasts through Saturday (11/3/18) and the official Election Day is November 6th! If you are interested in voting early – this link will take you to the information you need. Voting is an important right and I hope that all of you exercise that right on Tuesday. If your are looking for resources, check out last weeks blog post and podcast with Shari Gateley about Everyday Advocacy.

For this episode I interviewed Representative Jason Dunnington. Jason represents House District 88 in the state of Oklahoma and is soon to enter into his third term. Since his first election he has been a proeducation advocate. Throughout our conversation we discussed the upcoming election and the future legislative session including how educators can continue to engage in the process! You can find Representative Dunnington on Twitter @jdunnington or on Facebook.

Below are the questions I prepared to ask Representative Dunnington (there were some follow up questions in the podcast that are not included below):

  1. Introduce yourself
  2. Why is this election important for our state?
  3. How can educators… educate themselves on the upcoming elections?
  4. In what ways can educators support pro-education candidates in these final days?
  5. What should educators do going forward (reference 1990 walk out and subsequent election) to ensure that we are not in the same place 10 … 20 years from now?
  6. In what ways should educators engage their legislators going forward?
  7. What are the best ways to stay informed? (some bills/info coming out of 23rd and Lincoln can be complicated and convoluted)
  8. What is your charge to legislators, where do we go next to continue (re)building our state?
  9. How do we as a state move forward after the elections? What keeps you hopeful that we will have a vision for our state’s future?
  10. What is your vision for the remainder of your time as a legislator?
  11. What are you excited about going into the next legislative session? What are you hoping will be discussed/passed?
  12. Which elections are you looking forward to watching?
  13. What are your go-to resources for information about elections?

This episode was recorded at Design Tunnel in downtown OKC!

Episode 019: Everyday Advocacy

The Passing Notes Podcast is going to take a quick break from the #TechSeries to talk Advocacy while the whole country is gearing up for important midterm elections. This and the next episode is going to focus on what teachers in the state of Oklahoma need to know to prepare themselves to continue to use their voice in our state to affect change.

All of us will have the opportunity to vote in the midterm election and all of us will have a lengthy ballot. I printed my sample ballot off last weekend and there were races on that thing I didn’t even realize were happening. So here are some resources to help you navigate it all:

  1. Check out the podcast Let’s Pod This – This podcast is hosted by Scott Melson and Andy Moore and is affiliated with the Let’s Fix This organization, a bipartisan group of people who are working to help people engage in Oklahoma state and local politics. They’ve put out several episodes lately focused on the races and state questions that will be on your ballot!
  2. Print your sample ballot here. You will need to put in your name and birthday then the system will generate two options for you, pick one and print off. I used my sample ballot to do the research on each race and filled it out so I don’t have to think about who I want to vote for on election day. I’m just going to take my sample ballot with me to fill out the real thing.
  3. Confirm your voter registration here. While the period to register to vote is over, you can still verify that you know where to go on November 6, in the event that you have moved since the last time you voted or have never voted at your current polling place.

If you have any questions let me know! Our vote is so vital and our voices need to be heard in our state by representation that has taken the time to listen.

For this episode of Passing Notes I interviewed Shari Gateley. Shari is a high school English teacher, Putnam City’s 2017-2018 Teacher of the Year, and was a state finalist for Oklahoma Teacher of the Year. She uses her platform to speak to teachers about everyday advocacy for the profession and for our students. You can find Shari on Twitter @ShariGateley

This episode was recorded at Design Tunnel in downtown OKC!

Episode 005: Interview with Carri Hicks

Carri Hicks is an Oklahoma educator that is running for office. She started her campaign almost a year ago by promoting awareness for the issues most important to her and door-to-door campaigning. I met Carri when she began her teaching career atCH 1 Tulakes Elementary, she now teaches at Grove Valley in Deer Creek Public Schools. You can find more information about Carri and her campaign for Senate District here or on Facebook.

I wanted to interview Carri about her experiences as a teacher and a candidate for office, especially when considering our current political climate and the fact that we are in the midst of a teacher walkout in the state of Oklahoma. Yesterday, the first day of candidate filing, saw record numbers of individual filling for office. Our state may be at a tipping point for change or it may maintain the status quo. It is an exciting time to be in Oklahoma.

Below are the questions I prepared to ask Carri (there were some follow up questions in the podcast that are not included below):

  1. Tell us about your experience in education?
  2. What made you decide to run for office?
  3. What is the platform you are running on?
  4. How has your experiences as an education and as a mom helped you to define your platform?
  5. Why is it important for educators to run for office? Why is it important for more women to run for office?
  6. What do you think prohibits educators/women from running for office?
  7. What has been your biggest struggles/hurdles to running for office?
  8. How has the Oklahoma teacher walkout impacted your campaign?
  9. What steps do you think our legislators need to take to move our state forward? With what has happened in the month of April, what are your thoughts on change in our state?
  10. What advice do you have for people considering running for office?