Educational Institutions

Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence

  • Oklahoma City, OK
  • http://www.ofe.org/

Mission Statement

To recognize and encourage academic excellence in Oklahoma's public schools.

Main Programs

  1. Local Education Foundation Outreach
  2. Colonial History Education Programs
  3. Professional Development Funding for Teachers
  4. The David and Molly Boren Mentoring Initiative
  5. Academic Awards Program
Service Areas

Self-reported

Oklahoma

Throughout the state of Oklahoma

ruling year

1986

Principal Officer since 1999

Self-reported

Emily Stratton

Keywords

Self-reported

OFE, Academic Awards, Local Education Foundation, scholarships

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EIN

73-1260595

 Number

5288751626

Also Known As

Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence, Inc.

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Educational Services and Schools - Other (B90)

Educational Services and Schools - Other (B90)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

Our top three accomplishments last year were Oklahoma Mentor Day, Colonial Day at the Capitol and our Academic Awards Banquet. As to our goals this year, we held one of our best ever Fall Forum for Local Education Foundations on Oct. 21 with Dr. Marcus Nelson, 2014 Texas Superintendent of the Year, as the keynote speaker. Sharing his personal education journey and his philosophy for turning around schools, he won the hearts of the 150 plus attendees with his unique sense of humor in sharing his stories and giving advice for school improvement. One school administrator drove 190 miles to attend and said that "the conference reinforced his feelings on wanting to do more for his students." Our third annual Oklahoma Mentor Day was held in January at the State Capitol and honored 53 mentors before a crowd of 300. Keynote speaker Wanda Pratt, Thunder star Kevin Durant's mother, was a hit in what she said about the value of mentoring for her two sons who grew up without a father in their lives. Many of the mentors brought their mentees for a special time together of celebration and activities. Our Boren Mentoring Initiative is making remarkable progress in promoting mentoring programs throughout Oklahoma. Our Colonial Day at the Capitol was held on Jan. 30 and once again was an outstanding success. A unique program, one has to see it in action to understand what a truly outstanding learning experience it is in early American history for the 500+ fifth graders who fill the halls of the capitol all dressed in early-American attire. As the historical character "Thomas Jefferson" said one year as he walked through the House Chamber, "What could be a better place to learn about the laws that created our country than in the very place where laws are created today!" Our year closes with our Academic Awards Program, which honors outstanding students and teachers. It has ben described by a keynote speaker as the "Academy Awards for Oklahoma's public schools."

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Local Education Foundation Outreach

The Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence has helped build one of the nation's largest and most effective networks of public school foundations, with more than 220 established to date. Together, these citizen-led nonprofits have raised millions of dollars to promote academic excellence in their districts and have encouraged community involvement in their local schools. Helping to strengthen this grassroots movement, OFE provides free training, resources and networking opportunities for new and established public school foundations. Among its services, OFE sponsors state and regional training events, board member retreats, the LEF Leader newsletter and online resources. The foundation also presents $1,000 Outstanding Program Awards for LEFs, recognizing innovative programs sponsored or administered by public school foundations. Our LEF Outreach Program is underwritten with support from Claremore community leaders Frank C. and Ludmila Robson.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Adults

Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)

Budget

Program 2

Colonial History Education Programs

In 1993, the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence began a partnership with the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. OFE administers fellowships for teachers to attend the Colonial Williamsburg Teacher Institute. During the weeklong institute, teachers are immersed in 18th-century life though hands-on activities and reenactments of historic events. OFE receives funding to provide subscriptions for Colonial Williamsburg Electronic Field Trips. These programs help give Oklahoma students virtual access to Williamsburg through live television broadcasts, Internet activities and toll-free access to historians.OFE also co-sponsors Colonial Day at the Capitol for fifth-graders. A day of experiential learning, approximately 500 students all dressed in early American attire fill the halls of the capitol to hear historical characters, participate in a Patriot-Loyalist Debate, perform a Bill-of-Rights Rap, learn colonial activities such as silversmith, archeology, soldiering and more. To promote the creation of colonial activities across the state, OFE hosts a website (www.colonialday.org) with tips on planning colonial day events.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Adults

Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)

Budget

Program 3

Professional Development Funding for Teachers

Our Teacher Grants for Professional Development improve teacher performance and boost morale by providing grants to top-quality regional and national workshops, institutes and conferences. Grants help educators cover the costs of tuition, travel, lodging and the expense of hiring substitute teachers. Applications are posted online in October and November.*In 2006, the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence partnered with the national Fund for Teachers and the Tulsa Community Foundation to provide grants of up to $5,000 for individuals and $10,000 for teams of teachers for self-designed, summer professional development opportunities. The Fund for Teachers-Oklahoma program gives educators the creative freedom and opportunity to design unique learning experiences that will enhance their teaching and ultimately bring a world of new ideas to their students. The program has provided more than $2.5 million in grants to benefit 727 educators. Their journeys have taken them from the plains and forests of Oklahoma and the ecological wonders of Costa Rica to the classical ruins of Rome and the Great Wall of China.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Adults

Budget

Program 4

The David and Molly Boren Mentoring Initiative

During its 20th anniversary in 2006, the foundation launched the David and Molly Boren Mentoring Initiative to promote the growth and development of quality youth mentoring programs statewide. The initiative grew out of David Boren's own commitment to mentoring and the proven impact that mentoring can play on a student's success in and out of the classroom. Through the mentoring initiative, OFE is working with school districts, businesses, faith groups and mentoring organizations to promote mentoring as a positive step toward academic excellence. The foundation also provides training and networking opportunities for new and established mentoring programs and encourages programs to follow established standards for safe and effective practice. Recently, the foundation expanded its Fall Forum for Local Education Foundations to include sessions for mentoring programs. OFE has been designated as Oklahoma's official lead organization for National Mentoring Month by the Harvard Mentoring Project. The foundation also provides an online database of Oklahoma mentoring programs and mentoring information at www.okmentors.org.

Category

Youth Development, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)

Budget

Program 5

Academic Awards Program

The foundation's flagship event is its Academic Awards Banquet, where the foundation bestows cash awards each year to recognize outstanding public high school seniors as Academic All-Staters and innovative educators as Medal for Excellence winners. Since 1987, the foundation has awarded nearly $3.9 million in merit-based scholarships and awards. The gala banquet, which is broadcast statewide on OETA, has become the state's most prestigious academic event, celebrating the best and brightest in Oklahoma's public schools. Academic Awards nomination forms are available at www.ofe.org in late September with deadlines in late November.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)

Adults

Budget

Service Areas

Self-reported

Oklahoma

Throughout the state of Oklahoma

Additional Documents

Funding Needs

Our two most pressing needs are spreading the word across the state about our programs and fundraising to meet our operating and program budgets. Beginning our 30th year, it is still surprising when even educators aren't aware of all of our programs. It shows that we must continue to reach out to our constituency--the education community--to tell about our programs. And secondly, fundraising is always a pressing need. With our program and operating budgets always a challenge, to be successful in meeting our goals requires ongoing and diligent attention--as well as involvement from our trustees.

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

OKLAHOMA FOUNDATION FOR EXCELLENCE
Fiscal year: Jul 01-Jun 30
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2014
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
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Principal Officer

Emily Stratton

BIO

A founding trustee and longtime supporter of the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence, Emily Stratton brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to her role as executive director of the foundation.Prior to joining the foundation staff in 1999, Stratton served as development and publicity director for the University of Oklahoma College of Fine Arts. From 1987 to 1996, she was executive director of the Clinton Chamber of Commerce. In addition, she was both a founding member and interim president of the Clinton Public School Foundation.Statton is a graduate of Leadership Oklahoma, for which she is past vice president for development and membership services. She serves on the OU College of Education Board of Advocates and is a member of the Downtown Rotary Club of Oklahoma City.Under Stratton's leadership, the Foundation has expanded its programs to include the Fund for Teachers-Oklahoma and Teacher Scholarships for Professional Development, both of which enhance student learning by providing quality training and enrichment opportunities for teachers. During the foundation's 20th anniversary in 2005-06, Stratton oversaw the launch of the David and Molly Boren Mentoring Initiative, a statewide program to promote the growth and development of school-based mentoring throughout Oklahoma.

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Anil Gollahalli

General Counsel, University of Oklahoma

Term: Sept 2015 - Aug 2016

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

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BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?