Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Is this in my job description?

I spent about 30 minutes today chopping 3 inches off about 500 copies of reading logs, writing paper choices, homework assignments, etc. You see, we are having another copy crisis at my school. I was told that this crisis is city-wide. Apparently (according to my AP), the chancellor has put a "freeze" on all new purchases, including copy paper. We have been without white paper for almost a week right now. At first, no one said anything (communication anyone?), so the aides were doing our copies on colored paper, which is a complete waste of precious resources, plus a waste of paper since I can't have the kids doing their writing workshop pieces on pink paper. The copy machine for teachers, the one that is still my nemesis (This one), has been making really funky copies lately. They are all messed up and scrambled. Anyway, I discovered that if you choose "Tray 2" with 8 1/2 X 14'' legal size paper, the copies come out normal, plus I have plenty of the legal size paper. So, I spent an entire prep making all of the copies I need for the week on legal size paper and then I had to chop off the 3 inches to make all of those copies usable. Don't worry, I saved the 3 inch extras to make little mini-books for the kids to write in during choice time. What really gets to me though is that we are expected to have ample writing paper and reading logs and consistent homework, yet we have to jump through so many hoops just to provide the basics. I feel like I need to be a magician sometimes and make things appear out of thin air. When my "office" friends ask me what my job is like, I tell them, imagine being the CEO of a small company where you are expected to oversee employees, communicate with associates, and make a profit without email, copies, a phone, or any office supplies.

I'm writing a letter to the parents this week asking for a donation of a reem of copy paper for those families who can help. I hope I get at least 5.


Ms. M said...

We have a school aide who makes all copies for us (I assume because we can't be trusted with the machines ourselves). She always puts stuff on long paper when you say short or does double sided when you specifically say single sided. The worst part about her using long paper instead of short is that it ALWAYS comes out so that you have to cut from the top and bottom. Of course we have no paper cutter either. And the kicker? The one time I actually need something on long paper she says she can't because she doesn't have long paper. Grrrr!

Ilene said...

I'm sure if you ask the parents for some copy paper they will just "borrow" some from their workplaces that are surely overstocked!!!!

Anonymous said...

This is nothing new. My son is in seventh grade and we have been asked to contribute copy paper, paper towels, toilet paper (yes, you read that right), glass cleaner, hand soap, and tissues every year since pre-k. It never ceases to amaze me that public schools don't have the money for basic supplies. Teachers and children deserve so much better. I don't get it. Does anyone know why the DOE does't cover it? It seems so basic. Does the DOE not cover it, or are schools just forced to spend the supply money elsewhere?

miss brave said...

I totally feel you. We were told the same thing about not having enough money for paper, but they still expect us to be able to do running records (even though they keep changing the running records, so the kajillion copies I made in September are now useless), etc. Plus, today we all got a memo in our mailboxes that basically said, "Make sure you keep your students quiet when they're walking in the halls" -- uh, isn't THAT a waste of paper?

Of course, it doesn't matter anyway, because the copy machine is broken. Grrr!

tchr33 said...

The lack of resources in NYC public schools is shameful. Besides the paper/ copies issue, what about leveled BOOKS!!!! How in the heck am I supposed to teach reading and help the students move up levels if they don't have books to read of their level. I have been asking administration since the beginning of the school year for leveled books. I have received NOTHING. The AP and P write this request of mine in their little notebook and it is never heard of again. Now, in December, I have gone to upper grade teachers to see if their kids have moved out of books that I can now borrow. A third grade teacher has helped me out with an armful of leveled books this past week. So sad we cannot depend on the DOE or administration to cover our basic needs. We have to share among ourselves the little bit that is thrown our way.

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