“This is another way to say ‘let’s focus on what matter. Let’s pay attention to this issue,’” said Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Deborah Gist.
Gist and more than 100 others are preparing to walk to the state Capitol, calling it the “March for Education.” It’s a 110 mile walk from Tulsa to Oklahoma City.
Gist is joining with other school leaders and teachers for the walk, camping out in school gyms along the way.
Donations have been pouring in – food, water, walkie talkies, and megaphones.
Tulsa Public Schools are out Wednesday. While Gist wouldn’t say is schools will be closed during this “March,” she says she stands behind her teachers and the state’s largest teacher’s union.
“Having school and the walk are both dependent on one another. We’re watching that very closely,” stated Gist. “This isn’t over. It isn’t done. The work hasn’t stopped.”
The work they want accomplished from lawmakers includes funding education through a ball and dice casino bill that is held up in the Senate, a hotel/motel tax that was removed from bills that were recently passed, and other revenue sources.
Those are the same demands as the Oklahoma Education Association, which is pushing for the school shutdown to continue until the demands are met.
The “March” kicks off Wednesday morning at 7:30 a.m. at Webster High School.
Participants will walk between 10 and 18 miles each day.
Day 1: Wednesday, April 4 from Webster High School in Tulsa to Kellyville High School. - 17.9 miles (5 hours, 57 minutes walking)
Day 2: Thursday, April 5 from Kellyville High School to Bristow High School - 15.1 miles (4 hours, 59 minutes walking)
Day 3: Friday, April 6 from Bristow High School to Stroud High School - 17.5 miles (5 hours, 46 minutes walking)
Day 4: Saturday, April 7 from Stroud High School to Chandler High School - 15.6 miles (5 hours, 7 minutes walking)
Day 5: Sunday, April 8 from Chandler High School to Wellston High School - 10.2 miles (3 hours, 21 minutes walking)
Day 6: Monday, April 9 from Wellston High School to Jones High School - 18.4 miles (6 hours, 6 minutes walking)
Day 7: Tuesday, April 10 from Jones High School to the State Capitol - 15.4 miles (5 hours, 6 minutes walking)