I continue to be frustrated by the attacks on Tulsa Public Schools and I am deeply disappointed that this has led to the resignation of a great public servant and education leader in our state. Dr. Gist has shown courage in the face of unprecedented and unjustified political attacks on the largest school system in our state. I am thankful for our partnership during her tenure to prioritize the needs of Native students and her leadership through the difficult days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cherokee Nation is invested in the success of Tulsa Public Schools. The district serves more than 800 students who are Cherokee citizens and it deeply impacts the economy and quality of life of our reservation. I urge the Oklahoma State School Board to maintain Tulsa Public Schools’ accreditation, preserve local control and work with the locally elected school board for any reforms that are deemed necessary.

More broadly, I call upon all of the state’s civic, business and political leadership across this state to recognize the attack on Dr. Gist and Tulsa Public Schools will continue across all of public education unless we continue pushing back and encourage thoughtful ways to improve public education.

Chuck Hoskin Jr.

Principal Chief