It was a glittering night to celebrate Oklahoma's top public school students and educators. The Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence academic awards banquet has been called the Academy Awards of public education in the state.
On Saturday night, the state's top 100 public high school seniors are being honored for their academic work with thousand dollar scholarships and medals.
All-State Scholars are selected as part of Oklahoma's most rigorous academic competition, begun in 1985 by then-U.S. Senator David Boren, as a way to recognize and encourage academic excellence in the state's public schools.
"We honor great entertainers; we honor great athletes; we honor great business leaders, the annual banquet every year honoring the greatest teachers in Oklahoma and the greatest students in Oklahoma, I think our greatest students, our academic All-Staters, are every bit as important as our sports All-Staters and I think they need to have a day in the sun as well," said David Boren, founder of the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence.
And those great educators David Boren mentioned being honored tonight include Beth Howard of Tulsa's Mark Twain Elementary, Jason Proctor of Tahlequah High School and Lloyd Snow, the superintendent of Sand Springs Public Schools.
The ceremony will be televised state-wide next Saturday night on OETA.