Local companies hope to profit off of TPS "Early Release Days"

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Reported by: Sharon Phillips
Updated: 10/26/2012 5:55 pm Published: 10/26/2012 4:29 pm

For the second time this school year, students in Tulsa Public Schools enjoyed an early release Friday.

The once-a-month early release days were created to give teachers more planning and development time. Local businesses are also enjoying these special Fridays.

Family fun center, Andy B’s is excited about the early release program. To help prepare for the extra crowds, they are adding additional staff and getting ready for a boost in profits. Early release is not only giving teachers a break, but it’s also lining the pockets of local business owners.

"Normally our business hits more after 4:00, so once a month this is going to be great having it two hours early and extra income,” says Andy B’s event coordinator, Chuck West.

West says they welcome students looking to have some fun outside of class.

"For one person, if they have just $20, they can do a whole lot here,” he says.

Not only is this business adding more staff to help with the peak hours, it also added new attractions like laser quest to keep kids entertained.

Another indoor option for parents is Bounce U. This inflatable fun house is also looking forward to reaping the benefits of early release days.

"We're happy to accommodate all of the schools and we will be opening up from 1:30 to 3:00 every Friday that they are out,” says Bounce U owner, John Anderson.

The company has added an open bounce session on the days that TPS gets out early.  Mom of three, Andrea Megehee was a bit conflicted when she found out her children would be getting out early once a month.

"I was concerned because I work and my husband is in school full time, but luckily we came up with a plan and he gets out of school on time to pick them up,” she says.

Andrea expects to spend at least $20 more on early release days just to help entertain her busy brood.

Andy B’s tells FOX23 that it expects to see a minimum 10% increase in their profits on early release days. Remember, no child care will be provided on early release days unless your child’s school already offers after-school care. There will be no early release days in December or in May of 2013.

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