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Union Public Schools, Independent District #9, Tulsa County, is a premiere Oklahoma school district “ahead of the curve” on college and career readiness and expanded avenues for individual student success.
Its strong sense of community is underscored in its theme, “Working to Form a More Perfect Union.”
Nearly 15,000 students, pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, reside within a 28-square-mile boundary encompassing both southeast Tulsa and a portion of Broken Arrow. The school system is the heart of the community and serves as a unifying force. It includes an early childhood center for 3-year-olds; 13 elementary schools pre-kindergarten through 5th grade; and five secondary schools---a 6th/7th Grade Center, 8th Grade Center, 9th Grade Center, and a High School for 10th, 11th/12th, and an alternative center.
Parents choose the Union district for its all-around excellence. They take great pride in its wide-ranging dynamic academic programs; award-winning activities; caring teachers; highly respected elected and administrative leaders; and remarkable facilities. Union is one of the leading districts in Oklahoma in the number of teachers earning national certification. Its “Character Counts!” program is a statewide model, and its two community elementary schools--complete with health care clinics and community agency services---are the best in the country.
Each year, the district has an impressive number of National Merit Scholars, and its graduating classes receive millions of dollars in scholarship offers to colleges and universities throughout the country. About 89.5 percent of the 2011 graduating class pursued education after High School. Furthermore, the Class of 2012 received more than $6.6 million in scholarship offers.
The Union community provides whatever it takes to ensure students thrive. Successful bond issues have funded state-of-the-art tools to enhance reading, language, math, science, and writing skills at every grade level. Art, music, and physical education enrich the traditional curriculum. Professionals in remedial reading, speech therapy, and special education are assigned to the schools along with library media specialists, nurses, and counselors. Courses for gifted students are offered at all levels, as are programs for English Language Learners (English as a Second Language.)
In addition to challenging Pre-Advanced Placement classes, Union offers a variety of Advanced Placement classes which allow students to earn college credit while learning about a subject in greater depth and developing study and analytical skills that are important to success in college. In partnership with Tulsa Community College, Union was one of the first to pilot a unique concurrent enrollment program on its high school campus, enabling qualifying students to earn both high school and college credits at the same time--- virtually tuition free! The Union Collegiate Academy, which opened in 2012. also provides students exposure to college and career opportunities through a partnership with area universities and Tulsa Technology Center.
Union’s proud tradition began with its formation in 1919 when four rural communities – Alsuma, Boles, Mayo and McCollough – consolidated.
There were only four students in its first graduating class. Union’s original borders were much broader, extending as far northwest as 21st Street and South Yale. Those portions, however, were annexed by the Tulsa Public School District in the 1950s, making Union’s current northwest border 31st and Mingo Road.
During the next 20 years, enrollment gradually increased and new programs were added. Then, Tulsa’s development rapidly spread toward the southeast, leading to new office and home construction and a burst of growth for Union. In 1968, there were 800 students in the entire district. In 1995, that number grew to 11,500 and to more than 14,000 in 2010.
Union has experienced significant growth in the past decade. During the 2001-2002 school year, the district recorded total enrollment of 13,315. In 2010-2011, enrollment reached 14,931. Administration projected enrollment in the 2011-2012 school year to be approximately 14,911 students with the continuation of the four-year-old program to every elementary site and the three-year-old program serving approximately 760 students. View statistics.
The district maintains more than 2.7 million square feet of facilities, including 13 elementary schools (pre-kindergarten through fifth grade), an Early Childhood Education Center (three-year-olds), a 6th/7th Grade Center, an 8th Grade Center, a 9th Grade Center, an Alternative School serving ninth through 12th grades, a High School (10-12th grades), the Union Multipurpose Activity Center, the district Operations buildings (housing the transportation, maintenance, grounds including Central Park at Union at 62nd and Mingo, and distribution center departments), and an Education Service Center. Union also provides services for community-based health care and adult education and a health clinic for employees.
A strong corporate tax base and patrons who consistently pass bond issues have helped Union to build spacious, well-equipped facilities including the Performing Arts Center in the High School. The Union Multipurpose Activity Center, 6836 S. Mingo Road, is a state-of-the art building which houses the 6,000-seat John Q. Hammons Arena, fine arts and athletic offices, classrooms, a Wellness and Sports Medicine Center, and the U-Wear Spirit Store. The UMAC also hosts a number of community events and even college-level games.
Other outstanding facilities include Union-Tuttle Stadium at the High School, a new soccer complex at the Union 8th Grade, a 3-meter swimming pool with a seating capacity of 400 at the 6th/7th Grade Center. In fact, crews were to complete renovations of the pool area during the summer of 2012. A modern baseball/softball complex at the 9th Grade Center.
During the 2010-2011 school year the district was engaged in several construction and improvement projects. The remodel of Grove Elementary was completed in July of 2011 and a formal dedication was held in November 2011. Voter support via bond issues affords Union the opportunity maintain and improvement facilities at all of its sites.
Most recently and - the district’s largest project, approximately 125,000 square
Feet – continued through 2011 and 2012 at the High School campus with the completion of the Union Collegiate Academy in July 2012. Included in the work over the past year has been the construction of a new kitchen where students will be offered four different ethnic food choices and a serving and preparation area for sub-sandwiches called The Deli. Areas have been remodeled for additional offices and storage along with classroom modifications in the existing High School. The floors have been poured, steel erected, and the building is being closed in to move on to the finish work. About 3,300 students will occupy the school, beginning in 2012-2013.
Other projects in 2012 included a new tennis area at the 9th Grade Center and expansion of a fine arts wing at the 6th/7th Grade Center due to be be completed by August 2013.
Growth evened out during 2010-2011, with a 0.6 percent decrease over the previous year. Union served 14,931 students – 7,231 at the elementary level and 7,700 in grades 6-12; 7,681 were male and 7,240 were female. In terms of race, 6.9 percent were Native American, 14.4 percent were African American, 7.1 percent were Asian, 0.2 percent were Pacific Islander, 5.1 percent were multi-racial, and 66.3 percent were white. Just over 22 percent were of Hispanic ethnicity.
There were 4,886 first through 12th grade students enrolled in Union’s gifted and talented program. Ten percent or 1,533 of our students were enrolled in special education.
In 2010-2011, about 3,074 students throughout the district were bilingual or lived in a home where a language other than English was spoken, compared to 206 in 1995. The total bilingual count included 43 different languages. During the regular school year, 387 first, 483 second, and 458 third graders were eligible to participate in the Reading Sufficiency Act program.
There were 782 students (grades K-5) enrolled in Union’s Extended Day Program - 189 attended the morning program, 191 attended the afternoon program, and 402 students attended both. EDP Summer Camp was held at Moore Elementary offering weekly themes and field trips over a nine-week period. Weekly camp attendance averaged
During 2010-2011, High School and Intermediate High students earned 1,884 high school credit hours in Advanced Placement (AP) courses and 1,524 in Pre-AP courses. Elementary summer school was held at Boevers, Briarglen, Cedar Ridge, Clark, Jefferson, and Rosa Parks. Thanks to federal and state grant funds, classes were offered free of charge. There were 1,550 kindergarten through 5th grade students who attended these free summer school programs. In addition, 54 pre-kindergarten and 50 kindergarten students chose to participate in Cedar Ridge tuition-paid classes offered in June.
Art, music and physical education enrich the traditional curriculum at all levels. Professionals in remedial reading, speech therapy and special education are assigned to every, school along with library media specialists, certified school nurses and counselors.
Each year, Union has an impressive number of National Merit Scholars and its graduating classes receives millions of dollars in scholarships to colleges and universities throughout the country. More than 93 percent of Union graduates plan to pursue some form of higher education. Union is a leader when it comes to national certification of its teachers, and other schools look to Union as a model for its progressive programs including its Character Counts!, Community Schools and its Early Childhood Education Center.
Union has stellar athletic programs, featuring athletes who consistently rank among the nation’s best from football to wrestling to track. In 2012, Union's athletic program was named School of the Year.
Union’s spirit programs are also top notch. Varsity Cheerleaders, Pom and Highsteppers consistently make waves on the state and national scene. In 2012, the cheer team placed second in nationals and second in world competition. Union students also excel in fine arts, winning state and national accolades in marching band, music, visual arts, and drama. The Renegade Regiment was also selected to participate in the 2013 Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.
Union’s long-range plan for instructional technology gives students on all grade levels the opportunity to work with computers and other technology to enhance reading, language, math, science and writing skills. Video production studios at all school sites allow students to showcase their creativity.
Courses for gifted students are offered at all levels, with enrichment specialists at all the elementary schools. A wide-range of Advanced Placement and Pre-AP courses are available at the secondary schools. A partnership with Tulsa Community College offers concurrent enrollment, enabling students to earn both high school and college credits at the same time.
In 2009, Union launched the Union Collegiate Academy. The program started as an invitation-only High school program providing a five-point, one-hour class addressing a myriad of topics but has quickly grown from a concept to a program that provides college credit to high school students in a new wing which opened to students in 2012.
Union offers all-day kindergarten and all-day programs for 4-year-olds at every school site, as well as a program for more than 200 3-year-old students at the new Rosa Parks Early Childhood Education Center.
The FOCUS program to help with algebra and English, tutoring, before-and-after school programs, and academic camps provide students with convenient remediation and/or enrichment opportunities.
Union also offers leadership programs, professional development for teachers, student assistance programs, drug-free youth programs, early childhood services and nationally-ranked alternative education programs.
Union is accredited by the Oklahoma State Department of Education and the North Central Accreditation Association. Its accreditation process, involving parents, teachers and administrators at each site, is considered a model for other school districts.
Parent and Community Involvement
Union is part of a community that consistently supports the school system. More than 2,000 volunteers from throughout the community work in its schools. You too can Be There for our students!
The PTA (Parent Teacher Association) is active in all the schools and works with Union to provide equipment and scholarships for students and supplies for teachers. The Union Schools Education Foundation, which was established in 1991, raises and distributes funds to teachers for classroom-based projects. In addition, a number of parents are active in booster clubs for athletics and spirit programs, as well as band, music and drama.
A community partnership with the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine in Tulsa has allowed Union to open three health clinics - an employee clinic and school-based clinics at Rosa Parks and Roy Clark Elementary Schools. The clinics provide preventative health care, physical exams, immunizations and same-day treatment for a host of common ailments and typical childhood illnesses. Students and their families are eligible for care, whether they have insurance or not. For those who are uninsured, the services are free. The clinics have helped to curb absenteeism, promote good health, and encourage good grades.
The Community Action Project partners with Union to provide the program for three year-olds, while the Community Service Council, the City/County Health Department and a number of organizations such as the YMCA and Boy Scouts of America team with the district to offer a variety of services and programs.
It is our mission to provide our community of learners with educational opportunities to acquire and develop the best possible academic, vocational, recreational, social and participatory skills, enabling them to become valued, contributing members of a changing global society.