TPS Support Staff Volunteering At Dream Center During Walkout
TULSA, Oklahoma - Educators in green country spent Day 8 of the school shutdown helping students stay sharp until classes resume.
Several members of Tulsa Public Schools support staff said they are on day three with no pay; and with no end to the teacher walkout in sight, many of the employees are volunteering their free time at the Tulsa Dream Center.
You can usually find Brenda Gillespie in the attendance office of McClain High School, but Wednesday, she was at the Tulsa Dream Center, checking kids in for a day of learning, a decision Gillespie said she made because of the walkout.
The district can't pay her right now because students aren't in school, so she is spending her time giving back.
"It's in the community where I work at McClain High School," said Gillespie. "The passion with the Dream Center is that they was (sic) like, ‘We are open. We are gonna help families.’ And then, when they seen (sic) that the need was great, they extended the hours for working parents like myself."
Gillespie is one of many Tulsa Public Schools support staff members and teachers volunteering their time at the center.
"We have some teachers who I work with who have volunteered this whole time, some who dropped in to volunteer, so, yeah, we have come together as a community," said Gillespie.
There were 60 kids checked in to the Dream Center on the first day of the walkout. Now, there are more than 200.
Gillespie is on day three of no pay but she said the walkout is still worth it and she will be helping in any way she can on the home front until teachers get the funding they need for their students.
"We need a change. We need a better hope for the future," stated Gillespie. "It would be the betterment of our students…they will have a better education and better opportunity."