Union Public Schools is back to class and itâ€™s a fresh start at a brand new school for hundreds of Union students.
News on 6 education reporter Ashli Sims has more on how Unionâ€™s new Rosa Parks Elementary School actually benefits students throughout the district.
The usual back to school bustle was amplified at Rosa Parks Elementary School near 51st and 145th East Avenue by the thrill of the brand-new.
Some students could barely get out of the car fast enough, others were pretty eager to meet new friends. Its the parents that seemed to be having a tough time, holding tight to little hands and snapping pictures for posterity.
Especially, when it came to some of Rosa Park's youngest students. John Crawford: "its kinda hard first year kindergarten so everything's gonna be all right I hope." With the new Rosa Parks Elementary School, Union Public Schools is able to do something they've wanted to do for some time. Keep kindergartners all day at every site.
Parent Marie Turner: "That's great I would have loved that when they were littler, but now other parents will get to enjoy that and have that advantage." Rosa Parks principal Karen Vance: "having them all day when you can really get into reading and writing and mathematics. Two and a half hours -- I taught kindergarten so I know -- two and half hours is just not enough time."
Kindergartners throughout the Union School district will be spending more time at school. And at Rosa Parks, all of the students will be spending more time with their teachers. Karen Vance: "we're really into forming relationships with our families. And our children will stay with the same teacher for two years. We call that looping. And so we'll be able to establish those long term relationships with families and children."
Vance says she really wants the school to become a community center and to that end it includes an OU run medical clinic.
Union and Sperry started school Wednesday. Jenks, Bixby, Broken Arrow, Owasso and a few others start Thursday. Tulsa Public Schools goes back on Monday.