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Oklahoma: Working in Education in Oklahoma

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Educational Technology in Oklahoma Schools

The September 2009 issue of Edutopia magazine reported on a ninth-grade classroom in Northwest Classen High School in Oklahoma City that combines math and technology to solve real problems. The classroom has a desktop computer for students, the teacher's school-issued laptop, graphing calculators, a projector, and access to a shared mobile cart of laptops.

The Instructional Technology/Telecommunications section of the Oklahoma State Department of Education provides technical support, professional development, and Internet-based means to help educators integrate instructional technologies in lessons.

Oklahoma Virtual High School is a free, fully-accredited statewide program that provides online courses for students in Oklahoma. Oklahoma Virtual High School works just like a traditional high school, except everything is online.

The Oklahoma Virtual Academy (OKVA) is a public school program of White Oak School District that provides online education for K-8 students. The curriculum focuses on language arts, math, art, history, science, and math. OKVA provides the structure, administrative support, accountability, and testing required of all public schools.

Stidham Public Schools is a leader in technology integration in Oklahoma. It is the first district in Oklahoma with a 1:1 laptop program that provides its 120 pre-K through eighth grade students with access to a computer throughout the school day.

Teacher's Aides in Oklahoma

State-funded paraprofessional jobs in Oklahoma have no formal requirements. As in all states, requirements for paraprofessional jobs in Oklahoma that are funded by the federal government are governed by the No Child Left Behind Act.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the mean annual wage for teacher assistants in Oklahoma in May 2008 was $18,620. The national mean was $23,560 at that time.

Educational Managers

The Oklahoma Principals' Academy provides K-12 principals and assistant principals with leadership development that focuses on effective leadership principles of education and business. Two initial sessions are held in June with four follow-up meetings during the school year. Subjects include, among others, creating vision, paradigm learning, dysfunctions of teams, and teambuilding.

The estimated annual mean wage for administrators in preschool and childcare programs and centers in Oklahoma was $36,090 in May 2008, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The national mean for these positions was $46,370. For elementary and secondary school administrators in Utah the mean was $63,200; the national mean was $86,060.

Curriculum and Instruction

Under the No Child Left Behind Act each state is responsible for developing its own standards for student achievement. Educators use these standards to develop curriculum and instruction. A new study from the National Center on Education Statistics comparing these standards found that Oklahoma ranked 46th of the 48 states that provided information for the study.

Instructional coordinators develop instructional materials and integrate technology into instruction. They provide guidelines to help educators develop curriculum and provide instruction. The mean annual wage for instructional coordinators in Oklahoma was $44,690 in May 2008, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The national mean was $59,780.

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