Why would anyone keep their children home, the first week of school? Tulsa Public Schools is making a plea, to parents, to please enroll their children.
Class started on Monday and attendance is down by nearly 3-thousand students from last year. Instead of the 40-thousand expected, only 37-thousand showed up. Right now, the district is figuring out how many teachers they need, or don't need. Enrollment is crucial.
And enrollment is soaring at Broken Arrow where students went back for the first day of school.
Channel 8's Kim Jackson was there.
The school zone has gotten a little complicated here in Broken Arrow as you can see behind me there is a construction zone with trucks coming in and out of here also children coming to school. They're expecting more and that's taken months of preparation.
Nearly 90-days of summer Broken Arrow's plan went into action. Renovating 6-schools, construction at 19-of the 25 buildings was all part of it.
"Broken Arrow is growing we are almost 100-thousand citizens and I think when you begin to look at the Tulsa area, I think people are moving to the suburbs," speculated superintendent Dr. Jarod Mendenall, of Broken Arrow.
Their enrollment last year was just under 17-thousand students. But on the first day, their expecting nearly 17, 600 thousand students.
And that is a concern for police--who say more students, mean more drivers--more accidents and more tickets.
"We want motorists to understand if they don't slow down, for those flashing yellow lights in the school zone, they are going to see our red and blue lights behind them and we are not going to give you a warning we are going to give you a ticket, " said Sergeant Ed Ferguson of the police department.
The first ticket we saw, the driver was a student--going 38-miles an hour in a school zone.
The increase of hundreds of students is enough to drive construction and fill up one whole elementary school here.
They did open a new school, Highland Park elementary. And crews are still adding sod and touch ups to other sites.
But why the increase here?
"I would like to say I think the quality of education here is superb. We are doing a good job of educating children and doing a good job of making sure people feel welcome. I think that is another reason," said Mendenhall.
They did away with pre-fabricated buildings. Now all students are in the main school buildings together.
That was all about safety--and so is traffic enforcement.
Right now Broken Arrow officials say it's a good time to have a talk with your students about safely. As for the overcrowding and growth, they're expecting to open 6 new schools next year.