Concerned Oklahoma parents of public-school students will be rallying at the State Capitol on Monday, Nov. 23, to demand a greater voice and role in education, especially as it relates to decisions involving school closures and virtual learning. The rally will begin on the South steps of the Capitol at 11 a.m. and include several speakers. Parents will then meet with legislators as well as representatives from the governor’s office.
Oklahoma teachers’ unions and many education officials have been pushing for indefinite, perhaps year-long school closures and a shift to virtual learning. Many parents say they feel left out of these decisions and placed in an impossible position.
Derek Lariviere, whose children attended Deer Creek public schools, said he plans to attend the rally since his concerns have been ignored by the local school board.
“Virtual learning is not the answer for my family,” said Lariviere. “It is not healthy or productive for my children. It is not logistically feasible for me as a working parent. What we are asking for is a seat at the table to express these concerns. Right now, decisions seem to be made by unions and other entities that are not taking into account what is best for children or best for parents. I feel like our system is broken and parents’ voices don’t matter. That has to change.”