Parents Are Showing Support For TPS 'Work To Contract' Protest
A teacher work slowdown started Monday in Tulsa.
Many teachers routinely go to work early and stay late, but are now being urged by their union to "work the contract" - without coming in long before classes, or staying long after.
The call for a slowdown, in protest, is part of the buildup to a possible walkout.
So far, it appears that parents are in full support.
At Hale High School, before the day started, parents and students were outside with signs of support for the teachers.
“Whatever they decide, I'm behind them 100%,” said parent Tiffany Roos. “The kids, they are important to this world, and the teachers need to know and feel appreciated, and right now they do not feel appreciated.”
Alicia Williams, counselor at Eisenhower International, says “when you say work the contract, some teachers have a hard time because, ultimately, the kids are affected.”
At Eisenhower, the teachers wore matching shirts. Some arrived earlier than they had to, but another group arrived together - right at contract time.
“Yeah, I think it's great,” said parent Jacelyn Ferguson. “I want to support them in whatever decisions they make to get our legislators attention.”
Parents at Mayo were outside as teachers and staff arrived.
The principal, Kenneth Joslin, is a former teacher.
“Every teacher, especially in the evening, works much later. They stay late and I don't think the general public realizes how much extra work they do,” said Joslin.
The parents expect to see an impact, which could build over the two weeks of classes before the walkout deadline.
“They take papers home and grade them, they email parents, they stay after school and tutor children,” said Mayo parent Heather Hoover.
"We need them almost 24/7,” said Eisenhower parent Keena Myers. “To not be able to email them or contact them after hours is really going to affect us."
At schools Monday, libraries were closed after hours and some tutoring didn't happen.
Also, many schools are having parent teacher conferences this week.