Friday, April 8, 2011
OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today signed into law House Bill 2139, a measure that reforms the duties of the state Board of Education and the superintendant of public instruction.
The bill, authored by House Speaker Kris Steele and Senate Pro Tem Brian Bingman, streamlines the operations of the state Department of Education by placing control of the department with the superintendent rather than the state Board of Education.
The bill also clarifies the superintendent’s authority to give advice and make recommendations to the state Board of Education on all matters pertaining to the policies and administration of the public school system. It also directs the state board to submit a budget, as prepared by the state superintendent, to the governor’s office.
“In Oklahoma, the superintendent of public instruction is elected based upon the ideas and agenda they present to voters. And the superintendent – not the unelected Board of Education – should have the power to run the Education Department. This legislation will help to make the department more accountable and responsive to the will of the people,” Fallin said.