Some Parents Support, Some Angry With Tulsa Public Schools Online Learning Extension

Friday, January 15th 2021, 9:16 pm

TULSA, Okla. -

As the Tulsa Public Schools Board of Education voted to keep kids learning online, parents are reacting strongly, both in support of and against the decision.

The decision means and it'll be a year for most Tulsa students to be out of the classroom. 

Some parents believe this is a good move and safer for everyone, but many parents say this is making an already horrible year for their kids even worse.

Related Story: Tulsa Public Schools Continuing With Virtual Learning Until March

The Tulsa Public Schools Board of Education voted to push the first day of in person learning to March 22, and extend the first semester to February 5, to allow kids to catch up with their assignments.

"My son was shocked. He yelled out, 'I can't believe this, it's just too much,'" said Brooke Poellinger.

Poellinger's son Logan is a senior on the swim team. She said she's watched him become increasingly isolated and unmotivated as distance learning drags on.

"The board never took any interest in how necessary it is for high schoolers to be at school," Poellinger said.

Poellinger said this is tough on so many parents, like those with kids who have special needs, or in dual language learning, and seniors, looking to make the most of their final days at high school.

"These are memories they can never get back," Poellinger said.

Many other parents said they feel like pushing back the date is the right choice, including James Deming. He thinks with the number of COVID-19 cases in Oklahoma, it's the best thing for our community.

"The mental state of our children is being impacted, nobody is arguing with that, but I do think a little bit of boredom, while rough, is not as rough as losing a family member," Deming said.

Deming has a 5th grader, Griffin, and kindergartener, Piper, and said they've adapted well to all the changes. He is thankful to the board for following science and keeping teachers safe.

"I'm confident when TPS decides to go back to school, it will be the right decision," Deming said.

Governor Kevin Stitt released a statement saying this is a sad decision based on politics instead of data.

After March 22, students are scheduled to go back to class, but parents can choose distance learning if they want.