Tulsa Public Schools is deciding exactly how many teachers will staff schools this year. This comes after anonymous donors gave enough to fund 45 positions, on the chopping board.
It's a total of nearly two million dollars in anonymous money. At Webster High, they are hoping that means they can keep their band teacher or any of the teachers they've lost.
First, an anonymous donor gave 600-thousand dollars, enough to save 15-teaching jobs.
Now another has given one point two million, enough to save 30-positions. The school board president says it's relief.
"I am frankly gratified and blessed. I feel blessed that people have stepped up and said I can do more than fund one allocation. I can fund 15 allocations or let me fund 30 allocations," said Gary Percefull.
But he and other school board members are elected. We asked if it's ethical and transparent. anonymous donations in great amounts. The Ethics Commission says schools don't have to disclose donations.
Does it buy influence?
"We just reached out and talked to folks that we deal with all the time at T.P.S. that have helped us on a number of initiatives. We've got several positions and programs that are being funded by outside donors," explained Percefull.
The donations came, after lawmakers denied requests for more funding
"I think that is awesome. I just hope legislators don't take that as an easy way out to not fund programs they are mandating," said Kay Hilton, a retired teacher.
That is a concern for school board members, that now they maybe expected to find funding.
"I don't know what to do about that. I mean the thought has crossed my mind tell these donors, gee thanks for the offer, but we think we'll cut some teachers out of the budget this year and expand class sizes,"Percefull said.
This time they accepted the money and it could mean less crowded classrooms, more programs for your children.
The allocations committee is still meeting and letting schools know exactly how many teachers each school will have.