(L to R) Front Row: Vian Public Schools Treasurer Ed Brockman, Vian Superintendent Victor Salcedo, Cherokee Nation Tax Commissioners Mike Doublehead and Fan Robinson, Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Deputy Chief S. Joe Crittenden, Principal Chief Bill John Baker, Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd, Muldrow Public Schools Superintendent Ron Flanagan, Gore Public Schools Superintendent Lucky McCrary and Liberty Public School Assistant Superintendent Matthew Sweet. Back row: Roland Public Schools Superintendent Randy Wood, Central Public Schools Superintendent Larry Henson, Gore Public Schools Native American Programs Assistant Rhonda Eagle, Brushy Public School Principal Carla Fivekiller, Marble City Public School Admin Assistant Jeana Underwood, Gans Public Schools Superintendent Larry Calloway, Moffett Public School Principal Lance Stuart, Liberty Public School Administrative Assistant Mark Steely, Belfonte Public School
The Cherokee Nation contributed more than $5.4 million to 108 school districts during the tribe’s annual Public School Appreciation Day Friday.
School superintendents from across northeastern Oklahoma gathered at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa for a luncheon and to receive checks from the tribe.
The funds are from the sale of tribal car tags. Cherokee Nation allocates 38 percent of car tag revenue each year to education, providing a boost for schools struggling under the weight of state budget cuts.
“The Cherokee Nation, by providing these annual funds, has once again proven to be an invaluable partner to public education in northeast Oklahoma,” Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker said. “Year after year, the dollars from the tribe’s car tag compact serve as a lifeline to local school districts that are struggling financially to meet the educational needs of our youth. I am proud the Cherokee Nation continues to invest in our children, our communities and our future. Access to quality public education is the only way northeast Oklahoma will continue to succeed going forward.”
School districts have total discretion on how to use the funding. In recent years, it’s gone toward teacher salaries, operations, technology and school programs.
The program began in 2002. Since, the tribe has awarded school districts in northeastern Oklahoma $50.5 million in education contributions from car tag revenue.
These counties received funds totaling the following amounts during the 2018 Public School Appreciation Day event:
For a list of school-by-school award amounts, school superintendent quotes and photos from the event, visit www.anadisgoi.com.
Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director
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