Imagine improved academic performance

Published: September 25, 2013

Regarding “Oklahoma City is losing young teachers” (News, Sept. 2): Ed Allen, president of the union representing Oklahoma City teachers, said the top reasons for teachers leaving the district are “lack of administrative support and pay.” My daughter is a teacher in the Oklahoma City district through Teach for America. On a recent visit, we were impressed with her students and their energy and enthusiasm. She, like many of her colleagues, offers after-school tutoring for her students. On at least two occasions she and her students have literally been locked in after these sessions; administrators have said the students were “trespassing” if they were in the school after hours.

These students, supervised by their teachers, are attempting to improve their academic performance. Salman Khan, founder of the Khan Academy, recently suggested that allowing these types of students to use otherwise empty school facilities after school could significantly impact their success. It seems to me that administrators would support these efforts. Empty classrooms should be used for this type of academic enhancement after school at virtually no cost to the school.

My daughter and her colleagues get no pay for this additional tutoring; presumably, they'd be willing to supervise even more students. Imagine a room full of kids spending extra hours after school watching Khan Academy videos and other such activities. Then imagine their improved academic performance.

Patricia Wise, Holland, Ohio