Last week the Tulsa Board of Education voted to close my high school. The Board based its decision in the fact that Rogers has been on the “Needs Improvement” list for 6 years. As our Superintendent of Secondary Schools stated this week, every year they have to decided to keep our school open and finally they decided they could no longer justify allowing our school to operate. As a result, all of the current students at Rogers will need to find a new school. Rogers will in turn become a college magnet, serving neighborhood students and others from around the city who are interested in obtaining a college prep education.
The decision to close Rogers comes with a great deal of mixed emotions on my part. Selfishly I can’t help but feel frustrated that I worked for a year in a school where I didn’t get to contribute to longterm success. I feel personally cheated that I don’t get to see my students graduate next year–a goal that became a reality for many of them because of my class. I am also frustrated on my students’ behalf. They are being treated as if they a pawns that can easily be moved from one school to the next. Their feelings, comforts, and opinions have been wholly discarded. Ultimately, however, I recognize the need for Rogers to change. Currently it is not a functioning school. There are so many dramatic changes that need to occur to ensure that the climate of the school changes. I do not see those changes being made. It is therefore, with a heavy heart, that I recognize the difficult need for change.