Friday, November 11, 2005

caution: teachers crossing

As my prior post indicates, my school has been undergoing a fair amount of turmoil. I have written a number of drafts in which I have pondered the surreal events that have taken place, all of which I have elected to not post given the circumstances.

One of the most irritating results of the madness is that the administration has decided that my entire grade level if now on indefinite lock down in their homerooms. Teachers must now travel to individual homerooms for instruction. Dragging classroom libraries and/or textbooks is both inconvenient and/or impossible, and has resulted in a fair amount of animosity on the part of the staff. My fellow teachers are, for lack of a better word, pissed.

And this "lock down" has not been terribly effective. Students simply spill out of the door once a teacher leaves to transition to another classroom. Students are still in the hallway, running around, and engaging in basically the same behavior that they were before.

As a special education teacher, I'm particularly appalled with the situation. My classroom has been arranged with a number of environmental modifications to meet the needs of my students. My request to allow my two classes to transition between rooms has been denied, even after I explained ad nauseum that unnecessary environmental and schedule changes are detrimental to students with special needs. This, obviously, is not a concern to anyone but myself and the other special education teacher with whom I work.

Given that I am unable to move my audio lab, VGA projector, textbooks, reading intervention library, overhead projector, journals, crayons/markers/pencils, chart paper, study carrels, portfolios, laptop and god knows what else in any efficient manner, I'm finding that I'm pretty much fed up. Even if I could move my materials, it is still poor educational practice to subject children with specific cognitive disabilities to this kind of change.

Regardless, this is certainly my last year at Oz.


Anonymous said...

What does your chaper leader say?

Remember the school must do what is best for the students and if a couple of students are misbehaving then the administrators should be dealing with them not locking down the entire school.

Ms. H said...

Not to minimize the special challenges (ha) this presents for you and your kids, but those changes sound like they must be detrimental for all the students. I can't imagine teaching after-lunch classes of kids who have been stuck in one room for most of the day. Geez, you were serious about the lockdown.

I have very little special ed experience, but I did teach ESL to kids in a MIS V class in the past -- I loved them SO much. They had a whole different set of special needs, but changes/surprises freaked them out as well.

As the anonymous commenter asked -- it'd be interesting to hear how your union people are handling this.

yomister said...

Oh, man. My chapter leader?

This guy is totally ineffective. He has been subject to a number of recall motions. Only if I wanted to totally jeopardize my job would I call on him for assistance. The last time I asked for his help ... well, it wasn't pretty.