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Consolidation Blues.

When their tiny Sumner school system agreed to be annexed by three nearby districts, five members of the Oklahoma Education Association suddenly found themselves "with no jobs, no pay, nothing." Seems the district forgot to specify what would happen to its teachers.

None of the three receiving districts would agree to become the successor "local education authority," said former Sumner teacher Cindy Rupp, "because that would've meant it had to give us severance pay and unemployment benefits."

At that point OEA stepped in. The Association persuaded the state department of education to rule that in cases like Sumner's, consolidation incentive funds can be used to pay for unemployment benefits, and a successor district can be appointed if nobody volunteers.

Sumner was one of some 25 student-poor districts that took advantage of consolidation incentives in Oklahoma's 1990 school reform bill.

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Title Annotation:OKLAHOMA; consolidation incentives for teachers
Publication:NEA Today
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1U7OK
Date:Feb 1, 1992
Words:139
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