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EngageOK education conference takes to the road in July

The state Education Department will sponsor its annual summer education conference with a twist beginning Monday and Tuesday in Broken Arrow at Broken Arrow High School.

EngageOK on the Road will continue through July 28 at five schools throughout Oklahoma. The conference is free, but registration is required.

The conference will make stops in Sallisaw (Wednesday); Durant (Thursday); Edmond (July 25-26); Woodward (July 27); and Lawton (July 28).

State schools Superintendent Joy Hofmeister said the format change is a "cost-effective" way for the agency to support and collaborate with Oklahoma's education community while bringing critical professional development to an estimated 6,000 participants over 10-days.

"In light of this year's budget concerns," I'm thrilled that we've found a creative solution for EngageOK that represents a significant savings to attendees and slashes costs to the State Department of Education," she said. "This conference is a great opportunity for education stakeholders to come together close to home to share ideas and best practices, discuss new legislation and enjoy camaraderie with fellow educators and parents as we prepare for the 2016-17 school year."

Each site will provide updates and guidance on state and federal laws and regulations for special education, English learners, child nutrition, Teacher Leader Effectiveness, accountability, school improvement and more.

Christian Moore, author of The Resilience Breakthrough: 27 Tools for Turning Adversity Into Action, will speak at Broken Arrow and Edmond. Moore, who is waving his speaker's fee for the conference, will discuss ways to increase resiliency, lower the number of dropouts, improve school climate, prevent bulling  and strengthen academics through teaching social and emotional education to all students.

Hofmeister will deliver the conference keynote address at each site, and will lead a series of feedback sessions on the new federal education law that replaces No Child Left Behind. The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), transfers the bulk of education policy creation and decision-making back to state and local control.

The public will have an opportunity to discuss the new law during a series of lunchtime meetings on July 20, 21, 25, 27 and 28. These brown bag sessions will last one hour and focus on academic standards, assessments, accountability, school improvement and and teacher quality as they relate to ESSA.

Additionally, Oklahoma's 12 Teacher of the Year finalists will be announced at Edmond Santa Fee High, 1901 W 15, on July 25 during the morning general assembly. Schools of Character and other awards will be presented July 26 during the general session.

For more information, visit

Click here to register for a specific location:

Tim Willert

Tim Willert is a native Californian with Oklahoma ties who covers K-12 education, including Oklahoma City Public Schools and the state Education Department. Before that he covered district, federal and appellate courts in Oklahoma County. Prior... Read more ›