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4 minutes | Sep 29, 2022
As pandemic response wanes, Oklahoma schools adapt to the end of universal free lunch
Over the past year, pandemic relief efforts have been winding down. One of the first to go: universal free lunch for public school students. For more than two years during the pandemic, the waivers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture meant all kids qualified for free breakfasts and lunches. It saved families with one child hundreds of dollars per year, and for families with multiple kids, it saved thousands. It meant families who might qualify for free or reduced lunches didn’t have to handle paperwork, and no students had to navigate lunch debt. But Congress decided to let the program lapse. Across Oklahoma, schools are figuring out how to help families weather the change.
5 minutes | Sep 15, 2022
Where should we put our country's nuclear waste? StateImpact Oklahoma goes underground to find out
More than 2,000 feet underground in Carlsbad, New Mexico, sits the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP). WIPP is the country’s only deep geological repository for nuclear waste of any kind — the U.S. doesn’t have a permanent repository for high level waste like spent nuclear fuel . But its other claim to fame is it’s also a case study in “consent-based siting,” which is the practice of getting community buy-in for nuclear storage sites. Now, a $3 million research project led by the University of Oklahoma’s Institute for Public Policy Research is aiming to develop a new framework for consent-based interim siting of spent nuclear fuel. As the nation’s nuclear waste storage crisis becomes increasingly more imminent, researchers hope they can craft policy that will incentivize communities to volunteer themselves as interim storage sites.
4 minutes | Sep 9, 2022
Plaintiff: challenging Oklahoma's transgender bathroom ban 'just the right thing to do'
Three Oklahoma students are https://drive.google.com/file/d/17r_BojenWkGu6bOKIYAm5fiMLh1xPKnd/view?usp=sharing (suing the state) over its law that bars transgender students from using the bathroom corresponding with their gender identity. Andy Bridge is the lead plaintiff. The suit argues http://www.oklegislature.gov/BillInfo.aspx?Bill=SB615&Session=2200 (Senate Bill 615) is unconstitutional and should be overturned. Bridge and his parents, Aysha Prather and Eli Bridge, sat down with StateImpact Oklahoma reporter Robby Korth to share why they think it was an important step to take.
5 minutes | Sep 8, 2022
StateImpact answers some common questions about HB 1775
StateImpact has gotten many questions about House Bill 1775, Oklahoma’s so-called critical race theory ban. So education reporter Robby Korth tried to address the most common ones. Here he is talking with Logan Layden about answering those frequently asked questions.
5 minutes | Sep 1, 2022
Sharing Indigenous Oklahoma stories at Field Museum exhibit ‘really inspiring’ for Stilwell students
Stateimpact is on a tour around Oklahoma to gather voices, stories and more from youth. Education reporter Robby Korth and KOSU engagement reporter Kateleigh Mills talked with two Stilwell High School students about their art and how they fit in as Cherokee in Oklahoma.
5 minutes | Aug 25, 2022
A new wastewater monitoring program means Oklahoma doesn't have to rely solely on testing to find COVID and monkeypox.
Researchers at the University of Oklahoma started developing a monitoring program in 2020. Now, they're working with state health officials to scan for about a dozen pathogens — including COVID, monkeypox and West Nile Virus.
5 minutes | Aug 18, 2022
‘Something that can’t be replaced’: What a turnpike project could mean for Oklahoma wildlife
The ACCESS Oklahoma Turnpike project from the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority is a 15-year, $5 billion project to build several turnpike routes in central, southern and northeastern Oklahoma. Residents in the paths of these turnpike extensions who regularly see deer grazing in their yards and eagles soaring overhead are wondering, what’s going to happen to all the wildlife and the facility that takes care of them? And how far does the law go to protect them?
4 minutes | Aug 11, 2022
Texas students help make up for enrollment losses at Oklahoma colleges
As Oklahoma colleges struggle to maintain enrollment, they’re increasingly turning to other places to recruit new students. StateImpact’s Robby Korth reports the top target is the Sooner state’s neighbors to the south.
5 minutes | Aug 4, 2022
In StateImpact conversation, Tulsa high schoolers ask peers ‘Will you accept me as I am?’
StateImpact is on a listening tour with Oklahoma’s youth. And we’ve brought along our microphones. StateImpact’s Robby Korth and KOSU’s Kateleigh Mills talked to a couple of Tulsa high school students about race, gender and how they interact with their peers at school.
5 minutes | Jul 28, 2022
Oklahoma allows abortions in life-threatening situations, but how much danger is enough?
Several states that banned abortion created exceptions for medical emergencies, but the laws fail to make clear which conditions qualify for the exception. That leaves room for interpretation, which has already caused delays in life-saving care.
4 minutes | Jul 26, 2022
Oklahoma educators don’t shy away from difficult conversations at Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial & Museum event
As lawmakers, parents and school boards debate what kids should or shouldn’t learn in the classroom, teachers are still trying to find ways to lead tough conversations. StateImpact’s Robby Korth reports on a day a couple dozen educators at the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum spent figuring out just that.
4 minutes | Jul 22, 2022
Pt. 2, Sustaining sustainability: The waste problem in Oklahoma’s cannabis industry and the innovators at the helm of change
One Oklahoman is taking it on herself to chip away at the mountains of packaging waste left by the booming industry. Taylor Davis, a 28-year-old Edmond resident, drives hundreds of miles every week to pick up tubs full of pop-top drams, glass jars, tiny cardboard boxes and Mylar bags from dispensaries around the state. Since February, she’s held these recycling drives at dispensaries all over Oklahoma, which she advertises on her Instagram, https://www.instagram.com/recycleyourempties/?hl=en (@RecycleYourEmpties). She said everywhere she goes, she meets people who just can’t bring themselves to toss piles of packaging into a landfill.
4 minutes | Jul 21, 2022
Pt. 1, Sustaining sustainability: The waste problem in Oklahoma’s cannabis industry and the innovators at the helm of change
With Oklahoma’s medical marijuana scene growing rapidly, industry professionals and cannabis patients are feeling the weight of packaging waste. But a lack of recycling infrastructure and an unwillingness to raise prices for sustainable packaging have left Oklahoma unprepared to handle the growing mountains of plastic packing the state’s landfills.
4 minutes | Jul 14, 2022
Tulsa teenagers discuss how to be allies to their friends during uncertain times
StateImpact is on a listening tour with Oklahoma’s youth. And we’ve brought along our microphones. KOSU’s Kateleigh Mills and StateImpact’s Robby Korth talked to a couple of Tulsa teenagers about being allies for their friends, following the news and about their own roles as Oklahomans.
4 minutes | Jul 7, 2022
Two more COVID strains have made their way to Oklahoma. Here's what to know.
The health department confirmed that two new variants account for about 40 percent of new cases. And according to state data, the number of officially reported cases per week doubled in June. StateImpact's Catherine Sweeney talked with Dr. David Holden, the president of the Oklahoma State Medical Association, about how contagious these variants are and what risk factors Oklahomans should be considering.
5 minutes | Jun 30, 2022
'When a right is created by the Supreme Court, it can go away': What overturning Roe could mean for contraception access, sexual privacy and marriage equality
In the recent Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health decision, Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey were struck down. In his opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote three previous rulings that used the same constitutional mechanism as Roe and Casey had been decided erroneously and should be reexamined. StateImpact Oklahoma reporter Beth Wallis interviewed Kathleen Tipler — an OU political science professor who specializes in gender, sexuality and the law — to understand how the Dobbs decision could impact other precedents related to contraception, sexual privacy and marriage equality.
4 minutes | Jun 23, 2022
For years before the Saint Francis shooting, health workers have experienced on-the-job violence at alarming rates.
And they say the pandemic has made it worse. One national survey of nurses found 44 percent of them experienced physical abuse at work in early 2020.
4 minutes | Jun 16, 2022
Oklahoma City teenagers ask policymakers not to ‘downplay' their experiences
StateImpact is on a listening tour with Oklahoma’s youth. And we’ve brought along our microphones. Two recent high school graduates from Oklahoma City - Aspen Harrod and Ahmari Sango - talk about their comfort levels in the classroom, how they fit in society and representation. StateImpact’s Robby Korth talked with them in late May.
5 minutes | Jun 9, 2022
Tulsa mass shooting reignites gun policy debate in Oklahoma
On the afternoon of June 1, a man walked into a local gun store and bought an AR-style rifle. A few hours later, he used that rifle and a handgun he’d purchased two days before to kill four people at a Tulsa medical center before turning the gun on himself. This came just a week after an 18-year-old bought an AR-style rifle and days later massacred 19 children and 2 teachers in Uvalde, Texas. And that came a little over a week after an 18-year-old, who had previously threatened a murder-suicide at his high school, purchased a semiautomatic rifle and killed 10 people in Buffalo. As mass shootings continue to make headlines around the country, advocates for gun reform in Oklahoma have a long and uncertain road ahead.
6 minutes | Jun 2, 2022
Critics say Oklahoma’s abortion and Critical Race Theory crackdowns rely on fear
Under the state's new abortion bans, are Oklahomans allowed to donate to abortion funds? Are they allowed to advise patients on their options in other states? The slew of contradictory bills passed this year weren't explicit. Vague laws leave residents wondering what’s legal and what isn’t. Opponents argue that is by design.
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