MOORE, Okla. - Officials with Moore Public Schools have made the decision to go back to school Thursday as other districts will remain closed for day nine of the teacher walkout. Superintendent Dr. Robert Romines sent a letter to parents citing multiple reasons to return.
Dr. Romines issued the letter to parents first, instead of teachers, making for a very confrontational emergency teachers meeting Wednesday at Central Junior High School.
Hundreds of Moore parents, teachers and students crowded into the auditorium at Central Junior High Wednesday afternoon to hear from school officials on why they are going back to school Thursday.
“I don’t expect you all to understand all the decisions that had to be made," said Dr. Romines, who also said surveys talking about support staff pay, testing and school days after Memorial Day all went into his decision to resume classes.
He also said he had been informed that the Oklahoma Education Association (OEA) had a plan to end the walkout, but they disagree.
"As far as we have been told, there is no deal, so at this point we are staying the course,” said Carnie Cullen with the OEA.
Multiple teachers stepped up to the microphone, speaking their minds. Several said they should have been told about the decision before the email was sent to parents.
“I feel like you [Dr. Romines] could have given us a heads up before the public and today you kinda caught us off guard," said McKinley Cross.
“Even though we are not as big as OKCPS, if we pull out, those legislators will feel, hey we are starting to pull them out, so we can continue on with the next bill," said Brittany Bowen.
"I am already putting in for personal leave for the rest of the week. We feel like we have been demeaned as a profession today," said Chris Wright, a teacher at Highland West Junior High.
Moore school officials told News 4 close to 300 substitutes have been called for Thursday.
"They said tomorrow we should go in there and do the lesson they have left. That’s not our job," said Telecia Miles, a support staff employee at Highland West Junior High.
Dr. Romines made the reference that the school district would need to revisit the decision to resume classes Thursday. The OEA is asking him to do so as well. At last report, classes will resume Thursday.