Tulsa Parents, Students Make Final Plea To Save Schools


Wednesday, April 20th 2011, 9:42 pm
By: News On 6


Ashli Sims, News On 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- In two days, we will find out the details of Tulsa Public Schools' historic overhaul.

Dozens of parents met Wednesday to make last-minute pleas for their schools. And it was the same theme heard again and again: close this school and you will rip out the heart of a community.

In two languages, they spoke from the heart.

"We may not be the smartest school out of the most of them, but we do help each other, each and every one of our classmates and students learn," one student said.

But the message was the same.

"Why don't you implement the quality here instead of closing the school?" one parent said.

Tulsa Public Schools is between a rock and a $20 million hard place.

On one hand, the school district has students and parents upset at the thought of their schools being closed. On the other hand, the district's funding is running short and it's grown too big to survive.

TPS put as many as 17 schools on the chopping block to trim empty seats and save millions.

Read all three Project Schoolhouse Proposals

"I think that there are going to be too many kids in the classroom," Noah Crutison, a 7th grader at Cleveland, said.

Wilson and Cleveland Middle Schools are slated to shutdown under two of the widely publicized plans. District leaders are promising both school communities that their new option, space at a new and improved Rogers, featuring an early college program, will be worth the sacrifice.

"Rogers in history used to be a great school and I think in time it can return to that status," Etta Taylor, with Wilson PTA, said.

But some worry about getting into the program and tackling college-level coursework, since the majority of Cleveland students are not on grade level.

The superintendent will release his final recommendation on which schools should be closed on Friday.

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