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Tacoma childcare, meal options during teachers strike

Metro Park Tacoma announced a free day camp for students during the teachers strike. The camps are already full, but you can get on a waitlist or consider another one of these options.

With about 30,000 students, Tacoma Public Schools is one of Washington's largest districts. The Tacoma Education Association voted to strike, postponing the start of school indefinitely.

Free meal service for all Tacoma students begins Thursday, September 6. The Tacoma School District will offer free breakfast and lunch at these times and locations.

When the strike was official, Metro Parks Tacoma announced free day camp for students. The camps are currently full, but you can call your local community center to get on a waiting list.

The district is also working with partner organizations on childcare options. Parents like Katie Dean are getting creative.

"It's a scramble. I know a lot of people are supporting the teachers," said Dean. She plans to rearrange her work schedule to care for her two kids.

At local community centers, parents have been calling in search of solutions, according to Hunter George, Metro Parks Tacoma’s Chief Communications Officer.

"The phones have been ringing off the hook today and that is not a surprise," said George.

Metro Parks Tacoma decided to use its gyms and swimming pools to keep kids, age 5-12, entertained. They put out the offer of free day camps from 8 a.m. to 5 a.m. at four locations: STAR Center, Center at Norpoint, Portland Avenue Community Center, and People’s Community Center.

The camps are full, but you can call Metro Parks Tacoma at 253-305-1022 for waitlist information.

Free admission to the Washington State History Museum will be offered to K-12 students through Friday, September 14.

Some parents are turning to Rollin' 253 Skate and Community Center. Co-Manager Kawehi Marshall says they will offer a skate camp that cost $40 a person a day.

“We decided between the management staff and the staff we currently have, we would go ahead and open our doors and make it available 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.,” said Marshall.

SCHOOL TRACKER: Check your district

GUARDIANS: How are you dealing with childcare during the school strikes? Let us know on the KING 5 Facebook page

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