My connection must be glitchy -- it wouldn't let me post?
Oh well, here we go --
Three weeks before school, I turned in a note from my doctor for an air conditioner in my room. My room all fall is 90 - 98 degrees - then add 40 7th graders = YIKES! The problem is it gets hot, my sugar bottoms out and I can't spot it easily. (Signs for me are things like clammy behind the neck and in a hot room I'm always clammy). So I spend the day sticking myself and watching. Today I couldn't seem to get above 79. Just too hot.
Well, a friend in Human Resources reported to me that they argued about it and finally decided to put me through the "paperwork". So a HR rep called and said they would send me a form to fill out to permit them to send a form to my doctor to have him sign a form to put in motion a form to HR to request the air conditioner from maintenance. Then, they could requisition the work men to put it on their work schedule. SHEESH!!! I asked if I would get it before the snow flies.
We've been told we cannot buy our own or install our own because the district would have to pay the electric bill on it. So, not without permission.
I also think the Union should do a survey of all the work spaces. According to my HR friend the ratio of air conditioners to administrators is 1 to 1. Some buildings in the district are completely air conditioned. Some rooms in our building (like the office) are air conditioned. Basically we have an old, hot building and there you have it.
I'm wondering. I do not have a formal 504 in place. Would that be the way to go?? In the meantime, its box fan city. (which according to the fire department I should not have because they are not three pronged)
I wish they would at least consider the kiddos. I had a girl this week that overheated and I sent to the office to cool off. I gave her water from my fridge and put her in front of the fan but poor thing just wilted. Probably the only thing to get me air is for a parent to get good and mad and complain. I don't know how these kids are supposed to learn when they can't breathe! I keep the shades pulled, the lights off and tell the kids to move as little as possible -- sad, isn't it?
Well, there you have it -- the battle of the bureaucracy!
I left teaching in 2005, as a result of pneumonia. The steroids caused BS to elevate, white spots on the brain, and I developed nerve damage and a few other problems. Although, I'm no longer teaching, I still support you. I just read the review of "Waiting for Superman," and read that the writer blames adminitration (true) and immovable teachers (false) for the ills in education. He forgot to mention parents. How can a kid have a tv, a cellphone, and the lastest fashion, but no books in the home? Or how can a parent pump children like they're popcorn, and not have the resources to properly care for them? When the child goes to school, you have to play parent and psychiatrist.
The battle continues. They sent a package of required paperwork (disabled requesting accomodations) so I went to the doctor today. By my bloodwork and swelling, my endo could see there was a problem. I explained about the 98 degree classroom. He took all the papers and filled them out right there. He understood my problem. The papers basically want me to say I am disabled and unable to do my job. My point is that I am disabled and just need a NORMAL temperature room and REASONABLE expectation of a healthy workplace and can do my job just fine. I pointed out that human resources says I am a teacher with 20 students and that wasn't true. I have classes over 30 students and that means extra heat. (with 38 7th grade students right after recess that means heat) He was totally behind me. God, I love my doctor.
My next call is to the Union to let them know. I'd like to know if they have anything in our contract that says we have basic human rights -- we shouldn't have to.
It is now a year later and still no air conditioning. It was approved and I waited all year. In the Spring 2011 our rooms got to over 100 degrees (103) and we were told we were not allowed box fans because they are a fire hazard so I lost my two box fans. One day alone I sent over 10 kids to the office because I was afraid they would pass out.
The last week of school one of my parents found out -- if you wait until the kids are upset and tell the parents sometimes that works. She didn't have to call the school board - SHE IS ON the school board. So she made some calls and by the end of the week the head district guy came to see me. He said their department never got any notice of this. I showed him all my copies and told him the name of the guy in HR. He said, don't worry he'd take care of it. The same week an article came out in the newspaper bragging that our school system has the best cost per student rate in the state. They can educate the cheapest -- but in what conditions????
It is now August. Guess What -- no air conditioner in my room. I'm so surprised. My principal says gee, she'll call. I'll hold my breathe . . .
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