Lawton Public Schools elections (2014)
|General Election date:|
Method of election
What was at stake?
Lawton Public Schools
Comanche County, Oklahoma ballot measures
Local ballot measures, Oklahoma
One seat on the Lawton Public Schools school board was up for general election on February 11, 2014. One significant issue in the election was the district's adoption of Common Core, which candidate Bob Brown criticized. Lori Bridges defeated fellow newcomer Brown for the Area 4 seat.
About the district
- See also: Lawton Public Schools, Oklahoma
Comanche County underperformed in comparison to the rest of Oklahoma in terms of higher education achievement in 2012. The United States Census Bureau found that 20.3% of Comanche County residents aged 25 years and older had attained a Bachelor's degree compared to 23.2% for Oklahoma as a whole. The median household income in Comanche County was $46,320 compared to $44,891 for the state of Oklahoma. The poverty rate in Comanche County was 16.5% compared to 16.6% for the entire state.
Method of board member selection
The Lawton school board consists of five members elected to five-year terms by geographic electoral districts. There was no primary election and the general election was held on February 11, 2014. If no candidate had received a majority of the vote, a runoff election would have been held on April 1, 2014. The Area 4 seat was on the ballot in 2014, and the Area 5 seat will be on the ballot in 2015. The Area 4 member represents Almor West, Hugh Bish, Brockland, Crosby Park, Edison and Woodland Hills.
Candidates began to file affidavits of candidacy on December 2, 2013. The filing deadline for school board candidates to get on the ballot in the general election was December 4, 2013 and the deadline to contest a candidacy was December 6, 2013.
- Lori Bridges
- Graduate, Southwestern Oklahoma State University
- Clinical pharmacist, Reynolds Army Hospital
- Bob Brown
- Graduate, University of Oklahoma
- Retired educator
|Lawton Public Schools, Area 4 General Election, 5-year term, 2014|
|Source: Oklahoma State Election Board, "Annual School Election — February 11, 2014," accessed February 12, 2014|
Neither candidate filed a campaign finance report with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission during the election.
Information about earlier elections can be found by clicking [show] at the right.
What was at stake?
One seat on the school board was up for election on February 11, 2014. Area 4 incumbent George Schutz decided not to run for re-election, which left the seat vacant for competing newcomers Lori Bridges and Bob Brown. Neither the president nor the vice president of the school board were up for re-election in 2014.
Issues in the election
Common Core implementation
After the Oklahoma State Legislature approved the adoption of the Common Core curriculum in 2010, Lawton Public Schools worked to implement the standards so that testing could begin during the 2013-14 school year. District Superintendent Tom Deighan has praised Common Core, stating, "Common Core is designed to go deeper into critical thinking into a subject." Retired educator Bob Brown criticized Common Core due to its extensive use of standardized testing. He argued, "In the public schools, there are so many weeks that are taken away because of standardized testing. [...]I would strongly urge parents to get involved in the local level, contact the school board members, let them know what they think about it."
Testing and budget cuts
At a Lawton High School forum held in December 2013, district educators criticized the growing prevalence of standardized tests in the classroom, along with the effects of recent budget cuts on resources and teaching practices. Park Lane Elementary teacher Debi Green cited 90 minute reading periods for kindergarten students as an example of the poor teaching practices caused by budget cuts and consequent teacher shortages. She denounced the guidelines as "not developmentally appropriate" for her students. Woodland Hills Elementary teacher Cheryl Tate added she was forced to use significant personal resources to compensate for reduced classroom resources provided by the district. She also argued that Oklahoma's standardized testing requirements are excessive, claiming that the district is "test crazy" with its students. District Superintendent Tom Deighan defended the district and argued that the teacher shortages were caused by a lack of applicants for teaching positions, instead of by budget cuts. Bob Brown noted that many new teachers hired by the district leave "after two or three years." Lori Bridges argued that the district's financial troubles should not prevent it from investing more in additional safety measures, such as security cameras.
|December 2, 2013||First day to file affidavits of candidacy|
|December 4, 2013||Last day to file affidavits of candidacy|
|December 6, 2013||Last day to contest a candidacy|
|February 1, 2014||Last day to file first campaign finance report|
|February 11, 2014||Election day|
|March 23, 2014||Last day to file second campaign finance report|
|April 1, 2014||Runoff election (if necessary)|
|August 21, 2014||Last day to file final campaign finance report|
Additional elections on the ballot
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- Lawton Public Schools, Oklahoma
- Oklahoma school board elections, 2014
- List of school board elections in 2014
- School board elections, 2014
- Comanche County, Oklahoma ballot measures
- Local ballot measures, Oklahoma
- United States Census Bureau, "Comanche County, Oklahoma," accessed January 14, 2014
- National Center for Education Statistics, "ELSI Table Generator," accessed January 14, 2014
- Oklahoma, "MESA - Current Registration Statistics by County," accessed January 14, 2014
- 7 News, "Dates Set For Lawton Board Of Education Election," November 22, 2013
- Lawton Public Schools, "Board of Education," accessed January 14, 2014
- Lawton Public Schools, "Donna Ronio," accessed January 14, 2014
- Oklahoma, "2014 Instructions for Filing for Annual School Elections," accessed January 14, 2014
- Facebook, "Lori Bridges for Lawton School Board," accessed February 7, 2014
- Oklahoma, "Candidate Information," accessed February 12, 2014
- 7 News, "Annual School Board Election filings for 2013," December 13, 2012
- 7 News, "Common Core Standards Come to Lawton," December 3, 2013
- 7 News, "LPS teachers voice challenges, concerns with local legislators," December 11, 2013
- 7 News, "Brown, Bridges vie for open LPS board seat," February 4, 2014
- Oklahoma, "Generic Calendar for Filing Campaign Contributions and Expenditure Reports(C-1's)," accessed January 14, 2014
- The Lawton Constitution, "School Races Settled; Fletcher OKs Bond Debt," February 12, 2014
|2014 Lawton Public Schools Elections|
|Election date:||February 11, 2014|
|Candidates:||Area 4: • Lori Bridges • Bob Brown|
|Important information:||What was at stake? • Key deadlines • Additional elections on the ballot|