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Broken Arrow parents voice concerns in wake of planned teacher walk out

Posted at 5:36 PM, Mar 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-14 08:47:17-04

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. -- Broken Arrow schools could be closing in April for up to 25 days.

The board of education decided on Monday those absences would be made up at the end of the year, but some families tell us this could cause problems.

Mason Putnam signed a contract with the Army last year. He's required to graduate high school before he can leave for basic combat training on June 4.

"We're all scared that he's gonna end up missing this departure date and he's going to have to start over and that is not what we want. We want him to be able to go. He's got it all mapped out, all planned. He's got a goal, and for an 18-year-old that's a lot," his mother Lynne Putnam said.

The army recruiter for Broken Arrow High School said he's currently working with at least five concerned families. He's letting them know if school goes past training they may have to re-sign, which could mean different job titles and start dates.

Putnam said she wishes schools put this into consideration before approving closures.

"I support the teachers 100 percent. I am for them getting a raise. I'm just... I wish there had been a better thought out plan for every aspect of every student," she said.

Staff at Broken Arrow said it's too soon to know how these scenarios will be handled, but they're very confident special circumstances like this will be accommodated. Now as families wait for the April 1st deadline, parents say it puts a dark cloud over what should be an exciting time.

"He should be enjoying the last couple months of being a senior, being a kid, being at home before he's pushed into the real world. This is just... it's made it harder than it needs to be," Putnam said.

The board decided closing schools is the best method in the event of a walk out, given the financial concern of filling classrooms with substitute teachers

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