Editor’s Notebook: Barresi adds pilot program, Bush joins OCPA, Guild runs again in Fifth C.D.
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Published: 01-Feb-2012

From the editor’s notebook: a new program to offset Oklahoma’s weak performance in Algebra and mathematics, Oklahoma Christian University’s Brain Bush moves to the “think tank” world, and a retired university professor makes a second run at public office. 

Superintendent of Public Instruction Janet Barresi has unveiled a digital pilot program intended to help students in Algebra I. Mathematics scores for students in the Sooner State are below the national average, and the new effort is intended to close that gap. 

A release from Barresi’s office reports the state Department of Education “has contracted with Apangea Learning Inc., of Pittsburgh, Pa., to provide supplemental online math instruction and tutoring services to 10,000 8th- through 10th-grade Algebra I students statewide currently attending ‘priority’ or ‘focus’ schools. Priority schools are identified on the state’s Waiver request from No Child Left Behind as the lowest performing 5 percent of schools in the state. Focus schools are the next to lowest category.”

Barresi said, in a release send to CapitolBeatOK, “This is one of the state department’s efforts to assist low-achieving schools by providing additional resources to teachers and students.”

A total of 16 high schools and 23 middle schools will participate in the pilot program, which has begun with a teacher training “webinar” February 1-8. Barresi wants to expand the program after this “pilot year,” the agency’s release said. 

Today (Wednesday, February 1) is National Digital Learning Day.

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Brian Bush, outgoing executive director at Oklahoma Christian University’s Academy of Leadership and Liberty, is assuming the vice president’s post at the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs (OCPA).

In comments sent to CapitolBeatOK, Bush said, “I am thrilled to be joining OCPA in standing for free enterprise, limited government, and individual initiative.” 
OCPA President Michael Carnuccio said, “We know Brian well, and we value his commitment to advancing free-enterprise. As a fellow freedom entrepreneur, Brian is a perfect fit for the organization's culture and important work.”
An OCPA release said Bush will speak, write, and coordinate work on “policy issues important to the organization.” These will include constitutional government and energy policy. 
In addition to his work at Oklahoma Christian, Bush worked previously as an assistant District Attorney during D.A. Wes Lane’s tenure, in private practice, and at Harding University in Arkansas. 

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Tom Guild has formally announced he will seek Oklahoma’s Fifth District Congressional seat. After earlier establishing the framework for a second run at the job, Guild is opening a campaign headquarters tomorrow (Thursday, February 2). 

In a statement sent to CapitolBeatOK, Guild said, ““Many people have lost faith in our government. The middle class and the working poor are under attack and it is becoming more and more difficult to achieve the American Dream.” He contends,“the people of Oklahoma, and of our great country, deserve better representation and that is why I am running for office.”
The Democratic hopeful is an emeritus professor from the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond, and also a past professor at Oklahoma City University. His announcement program will be at the new campaign headquarters, 2405 NW Interstate 44 Service Road (NW 39), Suite 100c in Oklahoma City. 

Guild hopes to be the Democratic nominee against U.S. Rep. James Lankford, the Republican incumbent. Guild sought the party nod in 2010, losing it to attorney Billy Coyle, who subsequently lost the general election to Lankford

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