The Senate as a whole decided to approve a plan that will assist Oklahoma in addressing its current teacher shortage.
Senator Jessica Garvin, R-Duncan, introduced Senate Bill 1119, which eliminates the 270-hour limit for adjunct professors every semester, allowing institutions to hire them for as long as they are needed.
Because adjunct professors have outstanding credentials in their professions, they are not needed to satisfy the conventional certification standards and can be granted authorization to teach a topic relating to their expertise by local school boards.
Sen. Garvin justified SB1119 by citing a surge of adjunct instructors in Oklahoma schools in recent years, as well as a jump in emergency certificates awarded statewide.
“Until we no longer have a need for emergency certified or adjunct teachers, we must remove any barriers keeping districts from being able to have these highly qualified individuals in the classroom,” said Sen. Garvin. “Not only are these professionals helping fill a teaching void, but they’re also helping expose students to their professions, industries and prospective career fields, which is so important as students make decisions about their futures.”
On March 23, SB1119 received a 35-9 vote on the Senate floor. It will now be considered by the House of Representatives.