Storms possible this weekend

Students meet with superintendent to discuss biggest issues at schools across the state

OKLAHOMA CITY - Teens from across Oklahoma met with State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister Wednesday. They talked about problems with public schools - everything from bullying to teacher pay.

Christian Coleman is a senior at Millwood High School.  He's been a part of the Student Advisory Council since it started in 2016.

Coleman says that it's because of these meetings that schools have made some significant changes.

"I can say we've made real changes. My first year, I think we really pushed for getting rid of EOI and ACT/SAT testing," Coleman said.

End of Instruction testing was eliminated and public school students can take the ACT or SAT at the end of the year for free.

"The ACT and SAT was a recommendation that came from our student,s and it is something that is now passed into law and is fully implemented this year,” Hofmeister said.

Students from all corners of the state voiced their biggest concerns they see in their schools.

More than 80 were nominated by their superintendent to participate.

Coweta High School student Sarah Phipps wrote down some of her biggest issues, including bullying.

"I feel like, if they put more rules, stricter rules, for bullying, 'cause I think, now, if someone gets in trouble for it, they just get IP, in-school suspension for like, three to five days,” Phipps said.

Teacher pay raise, more connection between students and teachers and chronic absenteeism were some of the topics discussed, along with some surprise discussion as well.

"I think I was surprised how well they articulated the need for mental health services for students, recognizing that's a missing piece," said Hofmeister.

A first-hand perspective of the concerns going on in the classroom by those affected most.

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