Poll worries LPS teachers, officials say nothing to worry about

Poll worries LPS teachers, officials say nothing to worry about
(Source KSWO)

LAWTON, OK (KSWO) - The wording of the poll that decides whether or not Lawton Public School teachers will continue with the walkout has some teachers concerned, but LPS officials say there's no reason to worry.

Every day since the walkout began LPS has polled its staff to decide if school will be canceled. They've asked a simple question like "do you want to continue the walkout or do you want to return to school." Thursday, that question slightly changed, asking teachers whether or not they will report to school if it is in session.

Lawton High School teacher Karen Beavers said the way the question was written led her to believe Lawton Public Schools was taking the decision out of the hands of the teachers.

"To me and from others I talked to it wasn't as much as the teachers are in closed of yes we will be closed or no we will be open. It was more of schools going to be open on this day, will you be there or will you not be there. That is not what we have been told in the past," Beavers said.

Past polls only required teachers to identify themselves with their email address, while today's poll required them to include their name and the school where they work.  Beavers said that worried some teachers.

"I probably got 10 or 15 calls on my phone form teachers saying do I have to put my name in it," Beavers said.

Lawton Public School officials to 7NEWS they are in no way trying to take the power out of the teachers' hands. They said they simply changed the format of today's questions because they needed more data to ensure they are as prepared as possible going forward.

If the majority of teachers say they will not be at school Friday, they will remain closed, as they have for the past two weeks. But, if the majority says they will be in the classroom, they need to be prepared. They will also need to know which teachers at which schools would not be at school so they could have substitutes for them.

By having teachers put their names and schools in there, it allows them to send that information directly to principals, rather than having to sort through email addresses and identify teachers that way.

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