Friday, September 14, 2012

Get Out Your Checkbook: Tulsa's Private Schools Will Cost You Plenty

Lots of local folks like to heap abuse on the public schools, but one popular educational alternative—private schools—are not exactly affordable for many of those same folks.

This year's tuition at Tulsa private schools is higher than ever, with some local schools raising tuition as much as $800, the Tulsa World reported recently. Top rates the Tulsa's most elite private high school, Holland Hall, come in at a whopping $17,300.


Sure, some Tulsa private schools are much cheaper. But private school education—avoiding all those unwashed commoners—is still gonna cost you. Even the bargain basement private schools, like Wright Christian, cost somewhere north of $4,000.

Pay those fees every year for twelve years and, well, do the math.

Meanwhile, the state of Oklahoma is underfunding the public schools (again), with some officials claiming that money is not the solution.

Meanwhile, as noted above, the private schools keep raising their rates.

Gov. Fallin's (Phony) Rugged Individualism

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin was on message a couple of weeks ago when she spoke to the Republican National Convention about rugged individualism. It's a favorite theme of the GOP and right-wing noise machine.

We have nothing against rugged individualism, but we do part company with the exalted status the concept gets in the conservative firmament. Among the Tea Party types, the sacred individual can do anything and everything—except when he or she can't.

We were reminded of this recently on the 150th anniversary of the Morrill Act, federal legislation that provided land and money to establish agricultural and mechanical schools, including one in Stillwater.

Good ole Abe Lincoln himself signed the legislation—an actual federal government plan (yes!) that improved what came to be known as the Sooner state. Yes, Cowboy fans, until the Morrill Act took effect there was little more than grass and a few shade trees in sleepy Stillwater.

"There wasn't a site—there wasn't anything," OSU's David Peters told the Tulsa World, referring to the establishment of a land-grant college in Stillwater.

Now, of course, OSU is a major university. But establishing and building that university wasn't a one-man project; it was a group project that required federal and state legislation—and money.

Gov. Fallin and her pals like to pretend that all good things come from lonely heroes and heroines who risk their lives and fortunes for the Greater Good. Sometimes that's true.

 But Abraham Lincoln signed the Morrill Act because the individual can't do it all.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Cowboy Fail: Mike ('I'm a Man!') Gundy's Coaching Leads to Implosion

Big Mike ("I'm a man! I'm 40") Gundy had a very bad day on Saturday. His Oklahoma State Cowboys went to Arizona and got creamed.

Final score: Wildcats 59, Cowboys 38. Ouch!

You don't have to take our word for it. Here's what Gundy said: "It was poor coaching and poor playing." Give him credit for honesty.

But we like the assessment of Tulsa World sports columnist John Klein: "You have to go back a few years to find such a total collapse for OSU football."

Then there's this little reminder from Klein's column today: "Mike Gundy, just nine months after demanding and getting a huge pay raise, will now have to earn it."

Somebody remind us: How many millions was in Gundy's contract? Oh, that's right: More than $29 million.