Tulsa Elementary Students Support Teachers In Walkout

Wednesday, March 14th 2018, 7:06 pm

Spring break is about to begin for students in Tulsa, but a teacher walkout could mean another interruption of classes in just two weeks.

3/14/2018 Related Story: Lawmakers Try To Hash Out Deal Before Potential Teachers' Strike

After classes ended Wednesday at Eliot Elementary, students lined up outside the front doors to cheer on their teachers, who will be in class Thursday and Friday without students for professional development and parent-teacher conferences. 

"I want every teacher in Eliot to get a raise," said 5th Grader Tag Roberts. 

Students brought signs and plenty of enthusiasm to the chant - "Save Our Teachers."

"This is about more than a pay raise, it's about funding education so our kids can get the education they deserve," said Eliot Teacher Brian Banfield. 

Eliot has plenty of support from parents. In the past, they've even raised money to keep teachers about to be trimmed.

"We are here to support our teachers and we believe in an increase in pay and we believe in education because the children are our future," Parent Tiffany Bergman. 

While parents are rallying, Tulsa's Superintendent is urging them to engage Oklahoma's lawmakers.

"We want, we need action right now. Walkout is not the goal. We don't want to close school. For so many reasons, we don't want to close school, but we need action to prevent that from happening," said TPS Superintendent Dr. Deborah Gist. 

At Eliot, teachers say because of funding, class sizes are up and resources are running short.

"I certainly hope our lawmakers find another way to come up with funding, for our teachers and our students, but mostly for our students. We've waited too long," said Banfield. 

Thursday at noon there will be a public rally downtown to urge lawmakers to find a solution before the walkout.