Norman recreation centers open camps for students out of school for MLK holiday, staffing shortages

NORMAN, Okla. (KFOR) – Many parents across Oklahoma are left without childcare as many school districts move virtual or close down altogether.

But three Norman Parks and Recreation Centers are providing relief for parents. They are holding a day camp Friday and Monday from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

“Residents still need to go to work and we were able to provide that child care and we provide a safe child care for everyone,” said Mitchell Richardson with 12th Avenue Parks and Recreation Center.

Richardson told KFOR he’s expecting more than 40 kids at all three sites.

Norman mom, Angelica Johnson, like many parents, is forced to chose between earning her money to provide for son or miss a day of work to stay home with him.

“Being a single parent and working full time and trying to take care of my kid when the school is close, you know, we’re left struggling,” said Johnson. “Like, my job isn’t closed just because school is closed.”

Camp workers told KFOR they are aware of the risk they are taking to help parents, but it’s a risk they’ll continue to take to help their community.

“There’s no limitations on school districts. We’ll take charter schools, will take private schools, people from Moore,” said Richardson.

The all day camp is something Johnson told News 4 she’s grateful for.   

“It’s really beneficial,” said Johnson. “It’s been great to know that they’re here. They’ve got my back. Anytime that the schools are closed, they open.”

The day camp costs $25/a day per child.

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