Bill Would Add Tribal Affiliation to School Data Collection

Mike Seals - March 3, 2021 11:00 am

OKLAHOMA CITY – A bill that would require the State Board of Education to collect information about a student’s tribal affiliation passed the House unanimously Monday with a vote of 94-0.

Along with the current list of student data the board already collects, House Bill 1104, authored by Rep. Mark Vancuren, R-Owasso, would amend the Student Data Accessibility, Transparency and Accountability Act to include tribal affiliation for students identified as having American Indian heritage. By fully tracking tribal affiliation, schools can strengthen partnerships with tribal nations and make sure they are receiving all available federal funds for Indian students through Title VI and the Johnson O’Malley program.

“We have 39 federally recognized tribes in Oklahoma and other tribal nations as well,” Vancuren said. “This data will assist schools in meeting the needs of our tribal citizens, as well as help us better understand the cultural makeup of our schools.”

Vancuren, a 30-year educator and coach, said the State Board of Education currently collects other demographic information on students. This information helps with state and federal reporting and to access certain funding. Additionally, the entirety of this information is protected to ensure that individual students are not identified to the public.

HB 1104 now is enrolled to the state Senate where the author is Sen. John Michael Montgomery, R-Lawton.

Mark Vancuren represents District 74 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives, which includes part of Rogers and Tulsa counties.

 

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