Walters Rolls up a $3.9 billion Budget for Education in 2025

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Presenting the 2025 education budget request, the state superintendent appeared before lawmakers on Wednesday morning for the first time in several months.

Walters refers to the $3.92 million request as the “most innovative budget in state history,” even though it is around $47 million less than the 2024 budget. Walters remarked, “I thought our conversation about how to advance education in Oklahoma was excellent.”

The “Back to Basics” strategy by Walters is the largest modification to the 2025 budget. State Superintendent Ryan Walters stated, “We’re rolling out our back to the basics plan talking about teacher signing bonuses, teacher growth bonuses, and new ways to recruit and retain teachers.” “I do want to be clear that a significant portion of the $60 million for the Back to Basics program would go toward supporting teachers in the classroom.”

According to Walters, instructors will receive $48,250,000, or almost 80% of the total amount.

  1. $10 million as a signing bonus
  2. $15 million for tutoring
  3. Seeking: Ten million dollars
  4. Calculus: $5 million
  5. Bonuses for Growth: $22 million
  6. Perusing: $16 million
  7. Calculus: $6 million
  8. $8.05 million for training
  9. The amount is $7.85 million.
  10. Science and Math: $400,000
  11. Past: $8,000,000
  12. $4,500,000, or 7.5% of the request, will be given to an online early warning and intervention system and statewide screener.

Walters claimed to have the greatest teacher signing bonus in the nation. He informed lawmakers that in order to attract teachers to relocate to Oklahoma, he wants to maintain the number high. The status quo has failed, that much is true. We need to operate in a different manner, and our goal is to assist those districts in doing so,” Walters stated.

He proposes to set aside $10 million for signing incentives, distributing between $15,000 and $50,000 according to the subsequent standards:

  1. For teachers of grades PK–3 or PK–12 SPED with fewer than three years of experience, there is a $15,000 standard signing bonus or a $20,000 enhanced signing bonus if the district is rural or has substantial poverty.
    2. $25,000 standard signing bonus or $30,000 boosted signing bonus for teaching in a rural or high poverty district for PK–3rd grade teachers or PK–12th SPED teachers with 3–4 years of experience
    3. PK – 3rd grade with at least five years of experience: $25,000 for a regular signing bonus, or $50,000 for an enhanced bonus if the teacher works in a high poverty or rural area.
    4. PK, a 12th grade SPED with over five years of experience, will receive a typical signing bonus of $50,000.
    5. Moving to OK with fewer than five years of experience and holding a PK–3rd grade or PK–12th SPED certificate: standard signing bonus of $25,000.
  2. PK–3 or PK–12 SPED moving to OK with at least five years of experience: Standard signing bonus of $50,000.

The results of the FY 24 teacher signing bonus, which were primarily funded by $15,635,000 in ESSER and IDEA Part B Funds, were presented by the state superintendent. He claims that in exchange for a five-year commitment, 522 certified teachers from 200 districts were employed to work in areas of urgent shortage

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