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GOP-backed Education Changes Head to Governor (Mar 31, 2011)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Republican-sponsored proposals to make it easier for school districts to fire teachers and to expand the power of the state superintendent are headed to Gov. Mary Fallin.

The Senate on Thursday voted to eliminate the right of fired teachers to appeal their dismissal to a state judge. A second bill would transfer power from the state Board of Education to the state superintendent. That measure was introduced after a contentious meeting with the new Republican superintendent and a board of Democratic appointees.

Meanwhile, Senate President Pro Tem Brian Bingman on Thursday reiterated his projection that cuts to public education likely will be greater than the 3 percent proposed by Fallin in her executive budget. Bingman says cuts of 5 to 7 percent are more likely.

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