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Old 06-12-2020, 10:55 AM
Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma
20,548 posts, read 15,257,792 times
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Originally Posted by eddie gein View Post
Just to clarify. The in ground shelters have gotten to where they aren't that expensive.
I'd go with a reinforced small indoor room for a shelter, most easily done for a new home under construction. The in ground backyard shelters are eyesores and take up room you may want for a pool, garden or yard game. In the worst case, it may have water in it when you most need it.
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Old 06-12-2020, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by StillwaterTownie View Post
You have to take more time trying to find a home with a basement in Oklahoma. Several years ago, I went to a sale at a home in my neighborhood and was surprised it had a basement, even though it wasn't a very old home. The basement was nicely finished, unlike the ones often found on House Hunters. My guess it would be yet more rare to find an unfinished basement in Oklahoma. Do be wary of basements at one of the lowest elevations in town. It may be subject to having water in it.

Be sure Oklahoma teacher pay rates are up to date. I think they're supposed to be competitive with neighboring states.
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Old 06-12-2020, 03:02 PM
Location: Stillwater, Oklahoma
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Originally Posted by Threestep2 View Post
Maybe if you lived in Stillwater for most of your life, your viewpoint on basements in Oklahoma would be different.
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Old 06-16-2020, 10:53 AM
32 posts, read 13,152 times
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Originally Posted by lookingtorelocate33 View Post
My wife and I are looking to relocate from the suburbs of Chicago, IL and are considering Oklahoma (Tulsa or Oklahoma City suburbs). However, in researching Oklahoma, it seems the salary for teachers are over $10k less than those where we currently live. Since my wife is a teacher this is a huge factor. Why are teacher salaries so much less and is there any increases in the coming future?
This web site has a lot of data which you might want to look at:


There are a lot of scary articles online about underfunding of education in Oklahoma. From 2008 to 2018, state funding for education, which makes up roughly half of the funding, was cut by 28%. That doesn't speak well of the typical willingness of the state to spend money on public education.

Voter unhappiness over longstanding underfunding of education in OK became a major political issue in the last few years. The state was nationally embarrassed in 2016 when somebody who had been State Teacher of the Year moved to Texas, saying she was fed up with the low salary and general underfunding. The problem is not just salaries, which recently got something of a boost, but funding for everything else. Also, I've read that the insurance offered to teachers is too expensive. One article says that about 10% of new teachers in OK quit or move after their first year because of low salaries and funding.

From a 2018 article:

"I am a proud general at US Grant high school. We have the best administrators, the most dedicated teachers and amazing students. But we are struggling. Our building is only 10 years old, but it was built for 1,200 people. We currently have 2,000 students and 160 staff members.

Our classes are extremely overcrowded, with 30 and 40 students per class. Some of us don’t even have enough desks for our students to sit in. Coach Aaron McVay, one of our PE teachers, has had classes of more than 80 students. How much learning happens in a class of 80?

Some teachers don’t even have classrooms. They keep their belongings, textbooks and supplies on carts and push them from classroom to classroom, hour to hour. I have been a traveling teacher. Like some of our fellow union members who are adjunct college professors and hold “office hours” in their cars and nurses who travel from school to school, fingers crossed, hoping no one at a school across town will suffer a health crisis, it is almost impossible to be an effective educator while carting your work around.
None of the teachers I asked could remember the last time we adopted new textbooks. Our current history textbook, The Story of Oklahoma, is so old that the Oklahoma City bombing only gets a couple of pages in the epilogue. [my note: the bombing was in 1996]

It’s OK, though. We only have about 60 copies for our 600-plus freshmen, so the teachers have to create their own resource packets anyway. During the walkout, when photos of our beat-up and duct-taped textbooks started appearing in the media, one student told us: “I didn’t realize that people had textbooks with covers on them.”

The full article is at


I don't think things are vastly better now than when the horror stories got in the national news a few years ago. Some education supporters have since been elected to the state legislature after these articles came out, but they continue to have an uphill battle.

It would be a good idea to find out about the current teaching environment in any specific school district you are considering. With the state economy in bad shape again from the national recession and from low oil prices, it's hard to expect OK to soon become much more generous about education funding.
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