Children displaced by Hurricane Harvey enroll in Tulsa area schools
TULSA, Okla. (KTUL) —
Several school districts are now reporting students escaping recent hurricanes are enrolling here in the Tulsa area.
Tulsa has five students enrolled. Broken Arrow has one family with students and Jenks has two students from the same family.
Hadya and Emmanuel Hernandez were living in Houston with their parents when Hurricane Harvey forced them to evacuate. Their mom, Tamara, says she was moving a family member back to the Tulsa area, and they decided a move to Jenks would stabilize the young children.
Hadya, who is 8 years old, says she is making friends and focusing on the positive side of life.
“I think about like, uh, how God is protecting me and my family,” said Hadya.
Michelle Sumner, who is principal at Jenks West Intermediate, says she has worked with evacuees before from Hurricane Katrina. She says they could see more students enroll from Harvey or from Irma like they did for weeks after Katrina.
Sumner says the goal is to be there for the children and offer a safe place to learn.
“Often times parents will volunteer we are just here for the interim, or we are here just with family just until we can see if we have a home to go back to. And sometimes that works out and sometimes, they stay because there was no place to go back to,” said Sumner.