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Morning Bell: Superintendent faces challenger in runoff

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Linda Murphy, left, and Joy Hofmeister at the GOP School Superintendent Debate at City Presbyterian Church, Friday, August 24, 2018. Photo by Doug Hoke, The Oklahoman
Linda Murphy, left, and Joy Hofmeister at the GOP School Superintendent Debate at City Presbyterian Church, Friday, August 24, 2018. Photo by Doug Hoke, The Oklahoman

Good Monday morning! Tomorrow's election will include the Republican runoff for state superintendent. Incumbent Joy Hofmeister is being challenged by Linda Murphy, who ran for the post in the 90's. 

On Friday, both candidates appeared in two debates, each selling their credentials to lead a public school system that has been squeezed by a decade of funding cuts and rocked by a two-week teacher walkout in April.

You can read about the two forums and the two candidates here

Speaking of elections, several candidates for the state Legislature are getting support from a national pro-school choice group. Those getting support are mostly candidates who were opposed to the tax increase for teacher pay raise, or find themselves running against a teacher. 

Federal money for guns in school?

Last week, it was reporter that U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is exploring the idea of letting school districts use federal money to purchase guns, with multiple news outlets reporting that Texas and Oklahoma had asked her to review the matter.

However, the Oklahoma state Department of Education did not make any such request, according to Steffie Corcoran, a spokeswoman for the department. You can read more about the proposal here

Schools awarded aerospace grants

Twenty-eight organizations, including several school districts, were recently awarded Aerospace and Aviation Education Program grants or contracts totaling $296,697 from the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission.

The funding is a resource to educators for STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) instruction concentrating on aerospace and aviation.

The program, which has been awarding aviation education grants for more than 30 years, is part of the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission's mission to encourage and promote aviation throughout the state of Oklahoma. You can view a list of approved grants here

Also, TTCU Federal Credit Union announced last week that more than $1 million has been donated to Oklahoma schools through TTCU’s School Pride program since its inception in 2007. TTCU distributed $99,000 among 56 area school districts this August.

Students complete cancer education program

Nearly 40 high school students from across Oklahoma participated in the Stephenson Cancer Center's inaugural CURE Jr. program this month. This one-day program provided an opportunity for Oklahoma high school juniors and seniors to discover more about careers in cancer research and medicine.

The students explored career opportunities in basic, translational, clinical, behavioral and populations-based cancer research programs, including fields like biomedical engineering, drug development and tobacco cessation.

That does it for today's Morning Bell. Got a question, comment or story idea? Send an email to bfelder@oklahoman.com 

Related Photos
Linda Murphy, left, and Joy Hofmeister at the GOP School Superintendent Debate at City Presbyterian Church, Friday, August 24, 2018.  Photo by Doug Hoke, The Oklahoman

Linda Murphy, left, and Joy Hofmeister at the GOP School Superintendent Debate at City Presbyterian Church, Friday, August 24, 2018. Photo by Doug Hoke, The Oklahoman

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-66947eef1897b99fc60f36220b3e80d4.jpg" alt="Photo - Linda Murphy, left, and Joy Hofmeister at the GOP School Superintendent Debate at City Presbyterian Church, Friday, August 24, 2018. Photo by Doug Hoke, The Oklahoman" title="Linda Murphy, left, and Joy Hofmeister at the GOP School Superintendent Debate at City Presbyterian Church, Friday, August 24, 2018. Photo by Doug Hoke, The Oklahoman"><figcaption>Linda Murphy, left, and Joy Hofmeister at the GOP School Superintendent Debate at City Presbyterian Church, Friday, August 24, 2018. Photo by Doug Hoke, The Oklahoman</figcaption></figure>
Ben Felder

Ben Felder is an investigative reporter for The Oklahoman. A native of Kansas City, Ben has lived in Oklahoma City since 2010 and covered politics, education and local government for the Oklahoma Gazette before joining The Oklahoman in 2016.... Read more ›

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