Friday, August 8, 2008

Jonesin' for a Copy Machine

I'm looking forward to the start of own school...and working with the students again. However, there are a few things I have to get off my chest about our program.

We have been informed by the man who holds all our purse strings that we cannot have a new copy machine. That's right. A school without a copy machine. Let me say that again, NO COPY MACHINE. We can make copies with our fax machine. Or we can take what we want copied to the community college (that's the entity that manages our program), submit them and then wait for the two week turnaround on copies. And they ALWAYS fuck up the work order. They NEVER get the copy request correct.

We also have NO SOCIAL STUDIES TEACHER. That's right. We're short a teacher. Not because there's no one out there to hire. Last year's teacher resigned (took another position) in mid-July. The position hadn't been posted when I last spoke to my building administrator...that was last week. So, NO TEACHER.

So, I'm really pissed. Especially about the copy machine. How am I, the special ed. person, supposed to modify and adapt regular ed. curriculum if I don't have a copy machine? How about a "pop" quiz? What if students need a few extra math problems to make sure they've mastered a concept? What if we have an emergency note we need to send home to parents? WTF.

Something is seriously fucked up with our program. There's money coming into the program at the administrative level (that would be ICC) but it's not making it down to our actual building. And no one that works in our building can ask about it because none of us have a contract. We are at will employees. We can be fired anytime. So, who's gonna go call accounting and ask what happened to our state grant money when doing so will unleash a chain of events resulting in us losing our jobs?

Most Safe Schools are run by the Regional Office of Education (ROE) of that area. Ours is not. When it was established, the "powers that be" (read: Good Ole Boys) decided to hand it over to ICC. But we don't even go through ICC directly, we have to go through the Optional Education Department and the dude that runs the Academy at ICC; actually, we have to try and get through his secretary. We've spoken to our local ROE Superintendent and he has washed his hands/absolved himself of any responsibility or interest in what's going on.

We have no lunch program. But many of our kids are on free/reduced lunch. Where's that money? Is it in the sending district?

Districts that send special education students to our program pay more for that. Where's that money? It's not paying MY wages because I'm making way less than $20K per year. I'm part time. Except I'm really not.

I got out of education because I said that all I wanted to do was be able to show up and teach kids and not deal with the bullshit. But i guess it's just part of the game. Grrrr.

I wish we could put a bee in the ear of a parent with a child in our program and get something done, but sadly, most of our kids' parents are dealing with so many of their own issues, they are just happy to have a place for their child each day.

We have a couple really great teachers/administrators in our building. They'd love to stick around forever, but working in this environment is very difficult.

And all I want is a god damn copy machine. Is that too much to ask? (I promise I won't xerox my huge fat ass, either.)

No comments: