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Why One English Class Isn’t Allowed to Have A Library: Storage Space Woes at Manual Arts

Visiting one of the English teachers the other day, I was surprised to find how much storage space her classroom contains. However, as I asked her about it, I was unfortunately informed that nearly every cabinet, drawer and shelf in the room was occupied by the adult school.

It’s pretty easy to tell if a cabinet is owned by the adult school – it has a nice prominent label.

Let me explain: Manual Arts has an adult school that operates in the evenings. For two hours. Most classrooms at the school are occupied in the evening and it’s typical for a room to have a file cabinet or shelving unit in a corner of the room for the night school teacher to use. Most of the time, things aren’t a problem – the night teachers come and go, a large number of adults take courses, no biggie. Sometimes trash is found in the rooms in the morning and sometimes desks are moved*. That’s about it.

Really adult school? Six file cabinets for one classroom?

However, here’s a situation where the adult school has pretty much monopolized a classroom’s space – this teacher literally cannot have a class library because all of the walls are taken with adult school’s supplies. Let’s see: that’s five classes of high school students whose needs aren’t being met while one class of adult students is. I don’t mean to frame the adult school in opposition to the high school. The problem is a beauracratic one: although the adult school and high school main offices are literally across from one another, they have little communication between them. It’s very hard to get anything communicated or changed at the adult school. Last year I had an infuriating time where I spent 30 minutes every morning moving my desks in the appropriate orientation only to have them turned back into rows by adult school. I tried communicating with the teacher and ended up getting a trashed room and passive aggressive notes on my white board. When I took the issue to my administrator he told me that after 4 p.m. the school is turned over to adult school and there is nothing that can be done. Thanks.

If you’re wondering what the paper in the left-hand corner says, it kindly informs you that these cabinets are property of the adult school.

Oh hey, what do you know? Another file cabinet and two closets for the adult school!

Oh good, four more file cabinets and a cabinet for the adult school.

Just so we’re clear: these three walls are all covered with adult school storage. The fourth wall is the white board.

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