William D. Bickerstaff

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William D. Bickerstaff
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Former candidate for
Board member, Tulsa School Board, District 4
Elections and appointments
Next generalFebruary 11, 2014
Term limitsN/A
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William Bickerstaff was a candidate for the District 4 seat on the Tulsa school board in Oklahoma in February 11, 2014. District 4 includes Columbus, Cooper, Disney, Kerr, Lindbergh, Lewis and Clark, Peary, East Central Jr. High and East Central High School.[1]



See also: Tulsa Public Schools elections (2014)


Bickerstaff challenged newcomer Shawna Keller and incumbent Bobbie Gray-Elliott for the District 4 seat in the general election on February 11, 2014.

Election results

Tulsa Public Schools, District 4 General Election, 4-year term, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Nonpartisan Green check mark transparent.pngShawna Keller 49.8% 220
     Nonpartisan Bobbie Gray-Elliot 36% 159
     Nonpartisan William D. Bickerstaff 14.3% 63
Total Votes 442
Source: Oklahoma State Election Board, "Annual School Election — February 11, 2014," accessed April 9, 2014


Bickerstaff did not report any campaign contributions or expenditures to the Oklahoma Ethics Commission.[2]


Bickerstaff did not receive any official endorsements for his campaign.

What was at stake?

Two seats on the school board were up for election on February 11, 2014. District 4 member Bobbie Gray-Elliott sought re-election against newcomers Shawna Keller and William D. Bickerstaff. In District 7, newcomers Suzanne Schreiber and Gene Beach competed for Lois Jacobs' seat. Neither the President nor the Vice President of the school board were up for re-election in 2014.

Issues in the district


Tulsa Public Schools is addressing overcrowding in many of its schools. Since the school district began an ongoing efficiency initiative known as Project Schoolhouse, it shut down 14 school buildings with low enrollment. This left many schools operating at higher occupancy rates. District leaders say they need to pay close attention to ensure that schools don't cross the line between full and overcapacity. Each winter since Project Schoolhouse began, district administrators have conducted an annual site capacity review and the Tulsa school board has subsequently approved adjustments to school boundaries to help balance out student enrollments among sites. In 2013, Tulsa Public Schools reopened a closed elementary school building as a 7th grade center to help alleviate unexpected crowding at McLain Junior High School. Superintendent Keith Ballard believes that Project Schoolhouse is working and that the district could be eligible to pursue a new bond issue to address capital needs, including classroom additions, in late 2014 or early 2015.[3]

About the district

See also: Tulsa Public Schools, Oklahoma
Tulsa Public Schools is located in Tulsa County, Oklahoma
Tulsa Public Schools is located in Tulsa County, Oklahoma. The county seat of Tulsa County is Tulsa. According to the United States Census Bureau, Tulsa County is home to 613,816 residents.[4] Tulsa Public Schools is the second-largest school district in Oklahoma, serving 41,501 students during the 2010-11 school year.[5]


Tulsa County outperformed in comparison to the rest of Oklahoma in terms of higher education achievement in 2012. The United States Census Bureau found that 29.5% of Tulsa 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 Tulsa County was $47,845 compared to $44,891 for the state of Oklahoma. The poverty rate in Tulsa County was 15.4% compared to 16.6% for the entire state.[4]

Racial Demographics, 2012[4]
Race Tulsa County (%) Oklahoma (%)
White 74.2 75.5
Black or African American 10.9 7.6
American Indian and Alaska Native 6.5 9.0
Asian 2.5 1.9
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 0.1 0.2
Two or More Races 5.7 5.8
Hispanic or Latino 11.4 9.3

Party Affiliation, 2013[6]
Party Registered Voters  % of Total
Democratic 129,137 37.13
Republican 175,008 50.33
Independent 43,625 12.54

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin rather than a race. Citizens may report both their race and their place of origin, and as a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table may exceed 100 percent.[7][8]

Recent news

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