Bartlesville school board votes against closing schools for rally - - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - |

Bartlesville school board votes against closing schools for rally


BARTLESVILLE, Okla. (AP) _ When teachers rally at the state Capitol next week, some of their Bartlesville colleagues may not be among them.

The Bartlesville school board voted 5-2 on Thursday to hold classes and allow two teachers from each building to attend the event aimed at promoting education funding needs.

Many school districts across the state have decided to close schools on Wednesday so that teachers and students can attend the rally.

But board member Charlie Daniels said only five of the 100 people he spoke to about the subject supported canceling classes.

``I don't see what it is going to accomplish to have our teachers there, marching around,'' Daniels said. ``I am not impressed by Tulsa and Oklahoma City closing down. It has nothing to do with us.''

Jean Oliver, president of the Bartlesville Education Association, said her group is encouraging local teachers who want to attend the rally to take a personal leave day and go to Oklahoma City with the approved delegation.

The district will have to pay for any substitute teachers who will be brought in to replace educators who are absent.

Superintendent Gary Quinn earlier disagreed with a request to allow five teachers from each school to attend, saying it would be too difficult to find enough substitutes to cover the classrooms.

The district typically has as many as 25 teachers absent each day this time of year, Quinn said.

School board members Marta Manning and Emory Pitzer voted for closing the schools. Pitzer said it was important to back the teachers on the funding issue.

Manning said the community would support shutting down if the public realized how serious the funding needs are.
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