Food Bank Ready To Feed OK Students If Teacher Walk-Out Happens
TULSA, Oklahoma - As teachers get ready for a state-wide walk-out, many are making sure their students will be taken care of properly.
Almost every single student at Hamilton Elementary School qualifies for free and reduced lunch, so the community is making plans now to make sure kids still have something to eat if schools across the state shutdown.
"Teachers and paraprofessionals are calling saying we want to participate in this walk-out but we are worried about how the kids are going to eat," said Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma Executive Director Eileen Bradshaw.
Hamilton Principal Tera Carr said she got emotional Monday watching her teachers walk into school hand in hand.
"I direct buses every morning. I never see teachers because they are all already in the building so I just kind of wiped away a few tears and kept directing the buses," she said. "I see the stress in my teachers’ faces and yet they are still here teaching like their hair is on fire. making sure the kids have what they need while we all just wait to see what happens."
Carr said her teachers are doing what they can to get the legislators to make necessary changes without having to walk out, but, if it happens, Tulsa Public Schools and the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma are ready to help.
"We are going to go out and feed in communities like apartment communities with a high density of kids. We are going to be doing some pop up mobile markets," Bradshaw said.
The locations of the mobile trucks and markets will not be decided until the last minute, simply because the details of the walk-out are still being decided.
"No one wants to leave a child unfed. It's a huge concern of everybody's, including the teachers, and so we are all working together to make sure that we do the very best we can by them," said Bradshaw.
Carr said, "It feels like the whole city is kind of giving you a hug and saying, ‘There, there, we will get through this.’"
Food Bank employees said all donations will go to help Oklahoma families in need even if the walk-out doesn't happen.
If you'd like to help the Food Bank, you can find more information here.