Weekly Radio Message - State Superintendent Janet Barresi

Below is the transcript from State Supt. Barresi's weekly radio message from May 3, 2012. The audio file is attached below.


Hello and welcome to my regular video message. This has been a busy spring and I’d like to bring you up to date on our reforms and  talk to you about several initiatives focused on outreach and customer service.

On May 1st,  we kicked off our new Customer Service Desk to ensure friendly, accurate and timely responses to all inquiries from school administrators, parents, educators and others seeking information from the Oklahoma State Department of Education. More information about the Service Desk is on our website at sde.ok.gov

The Service Desk is a major change, and a part of my goal to transform the State Department of Education from being a regulatory agency to more of a service organization.


Our new website has been live since March. This is an important upgrade from the old website — and it is focused on being user-friendly, more dynamic and filled with multimedia. The Web is constantly changing, so if you've got feedback on how to improve our site even more, we want to hear about it.


On our website, you can also sign up for a series of newsletters we've introduced for nearly every stakeholder. There's one for educators, another for parents and still another for school administrators. I encourage you to take advantage of this resource — whether you're a school leader or an interested citizen.


In April, we launched an iTunes U portal for Oklahoma. iTunes U is a dedicated area within the free iTunes software application that gives users public access to hundreds of thousands of free lectures, videos, books, podcasts, and courses from learning institutions all over the world. And with the iTunes U app users can download content directly onto their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. Our new iTunes U site is another innovative step in our goal to deliver anytime, anywhere learning.


The same week we launched our iTunes U presence, we also held a Digital Learning Summit  with legislative leaders, state policymakers and a broad array of stakeholders from across the state. The summit featured keynotes from education innovator Richard Culatta and reformer and education technology expert Tom Vander Ark. These two keynotes can be seen on our iTunes U portal. This summit was the first step in establishing an organized statewide strategy to embrace all that digital learning has to offer.


The past few months have also been a busy time for implementation of the package of major reforms I call the C3 Plan.  All of the major puzzle pieces are now in place for Oklahoma to embrace these changes. 

I group these major reforms under a unifying goal: by the year 2020, each child in our state should graduate prepared for the demands of college, career and citizenship in the21st Century. The plan has four major aims: first, ensuring that an effective teacher is in every classroom and an effective leader is in every school building; second, an emphasis on literacy and 21st Century skills; third, a shift toward more accountability and rigor; and finally an embrace of the learning revolution offered by innovations in digital learning and choice.

Many educators and school employees across our state are working hard to make these reforms successful. Their hard work has the potential to truly improve our schools. 

Ultimately, the C3 Plan is about empowering students, parents, educators and citizens. We’ll empower students by preparing them to be successful and informed citizens. We’ll empower parents and citizens by providing them with easy-to-understand information about their children and school, and by providing them with more choices. And we’ll empower educators by giving them targeted support, encouraging them to reach their full potential. 

Let’s seize this moment of opportunity. And let’s work together to ensure these impressive reforms become reality.

Thanks for watching and I'll see you again soon.

Last updated on May 4, 2012