INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — With half the state’s districts closed Tuesday, thousands of parents had to find child care for the day.
While educators and other people filled downtown for a rally designed to get the attention of Indiana legislators, some parents had to take the day off to stay at home with their kids. A total of 147 Indiana school districts canceled classed in recognition of the Red for Ed rally at the Statehouse. A total of 144 school had classes as usual.
Some parents joined teachers at the rally.
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Parent Rose Buckley said, “This is a difficult situation. Going to school is really important, and it is especially at the last minute difficult for parents to find a (child care) space.”
Some districts made the call to cancel weeks ago while others only gave parents a few days of notice. Most parents recognized the inconvenience and tried to make the best of it.
Parent Kristen Strzynski said, “We turned it into an educational day. We came to see the monuments. We are going to stop by the museum, and we are going to try Giordano’s Pizza.”
Strzynski said she worries if something doesn’t change, her kids may have to find a new school. She lives in a community on the Ohio River near Cincinnati. “We are from Aurora, Indiana, and our school is facing one to three school closures next year because of budget cuts and school funding,” she says.
Not all parents could take off work. Some kids ended up with family members for the day.
Aunt and teacher Katelyn Robertson said of a child with her, “She obviously got out of school so we decided to spend the day together and I wanted to take her to the rally because I wanted her to see why she was missing school today and there was actually tons of kids there.”
Some people used the Red for Ed rally as a lesson for their students in using their voice.
Buckley said, “Anytime a student can use their voice in a space for someone else that is a great lesson for them to really understand empathy, understand and really value and appreciate the things that their teachers and their parents do for them.”