Thursday, August 16, 2007

Classroom Readiness

In my earlier post, "Putting Off the Inevitable," I wrote about moving from my old classroom to another classroom and the reasons behind the move. In this post, I thought I would update what has transpired over the last week and a half of moving.

As of right now, no one is moving into the classroom I was told to vacate. It will be empty. A newly remodeled classroom with wonderful storage space will be vacant for the upcoming school year. That to me is a travesty.

My students will be in a portable this year that seems to be falling apart at its seams. My principal has proven that he is quite capable of breaking promises rather than trying to make a bad situation better. At the end of the school year, he promised that he would put in a work order to have the District help me in my move. He did not do that until last week. The District's response, not surprisingly, was that they would not be able to come out until the end of this week. This meant that our two custodians did all the moving for me. Thank goodness I have a very good relationship with both of them.

My principal also promised to order two locking cabinets. Again, he never ordered them. Mr. Max (the custodian who I had erroneously thought was the new head custodian) pulled me aside to let me know that there were four lateral file cabinets in storage that were in very good condition. He wanted to know if I was interested in having those in lieu of the locking cabinets. I looked them over and told him that they would be fine. So they were moved into my new classroom.

At the end of the last week, I informed my principal that my white boards in the portable needed to be replaced. The classroom I was vacating has two brand new white boards, one of which is on a side wall that I rarely used. I requested that it be taken down and placed in the portable, replacing the old white boards. He told me that this could be done.

On Monday when I came in to work in my classroom, I was told that replacing the white board could now not be done. Instead it was proposed that the hole that is in the middle of one white board couple be repaired. This doesn't solve the problem of the other white board which is so severely warped at the top that it has completely separated from the wall. Luckily I received this latest bit of information towards the end of the day because I was so disgusted with everything that I had to leave before I said something that I would regret.

My husband took Tuesday off to help me with some things that I couldn't do on my own. He installed new curtains, put in extra strong bolts with a new padlock on the one cabinet that was in the classroom, helped me put up two bulletin spaces, repaired two holes that were in the wall, and so much more. The portable looks much better than it did and I feel much more prepared. My husband and I managed to make the proverbial lemonade out of lemons.


Athena said...

Your husband was so sweet to help you with your room!

Don't custodians rock! One of our custodians came in today and complimented me that my room smelled so nice. Sometimes our custodians translate Spanish for me! It just makes the job much easier.


Polski3 said...

Flexibility in the face of ignorance, stupidity, callousness and just plain lack of common sense is a great virtue and necessary skill for any teacher. Congratulations for scoring "Advanced" in teacher flexibility !

Hope you have a great school year!

Jane said...

GRRR! These portables need to be bombed! Seriously, I think it is shameful that children and teachers have to be in these pits while regular classrooms sit empty. I moved to a portable today while some teachers have regular classrooms that are empty when they are off track. The fumes in this portable are terrible. I am not sure if it is mold or decomposing glues that are in the plywood construction. This portable was inspected because of the fumes but they found nothing. Still, I had a major headache from the smell. Meanwhile our brand new building sits empty because they have an asbestos problem in another building and can't get a cert. of occupancy for the new building until that is taken care of?

Who runs these school building programs? Clearly nobody who cares about kids!

Margaret said...

Gee, this sounds familiar. When we moved into portables several years ago, we were supposed to get all new desks, screens, etc...HA HA My screen was from a dumpster, and last year swung free when I pulled it down, almost clipping me in the head. A student fixed it for me; I e-mailed and contacted everyone in the admin and the head custodian. However, NO ONE did anything more to fix it. I'm kind of worried to pull it down this year.

Frumteacher said...

That's so sweet of him! Now you can actually sit back and relax a bit before the students start moving in. I empathize with you about the trailer. My school will be demolished and rebuilt somewhere during this year and we are supposed to be teaching in trailers for about 2,5 yrs :-(