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Lesson Plans

Re: artsednet-digest V2 #1753

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Fri, 8 Oct 1999 02:00:54 EDT

Budget: First of all, let me say that I love having the opportunity of being
an art teacher. It is the best. I really feel that what we are giving our
students cannot be obtained by them in any of the other disciplines. I feel
that what we do for our students is very, very important.
However, my budget is the worst I have had in 36 years. I teach for the
Scottsdale School District, here in Arizona, a district where the majority of
the parents are wealthy and who support the arts in their homes and leisure
time. They are great, the district is one of the best in the support of
strong education, etc. However, I think that this community, the
administration, and the parents are really concerned about having very high
test scores and getting their children in to the best colleges, and just
don't see the arts as the answer. In the highschools they are allowed to
charge an optional fee, but at the elementary level there is, of course, no
such fee. Elementary art teachers are at the mercy of whoever does the
budget at the individual schools. Elementary art teachers are usually
isolated members of the faculty, not a part of the grade level teacher
groups, and so therefore, do not have very powerful voices when everyone
else is looking out for themselves.
My budget this year is less than $1.00 per student per year, or $685.00. (By
the way, I heard of a new teacher in the district who was given only $150.00
for the year. She was trying to teach with broken crayons and newsprint). It
is awful and I am put in the position of always begging, which gets "old"
very quickly for me and for those I am forced to beg from. Being in such an
affluent area, with very few special needs or minority students makes it
almost impossible to apply for grants. I also, simply do not have the time
to write one. I spend my lunch period setting up for the afternoon classes.
I am tired of teaching lessons with donated discards. I want to teach a
sequential curriculum based on the National Standards. The budget or lack of
a reasonable budget should not be what drives your lesson choices!!! Any
suggestions from you all would be welcome. It does, however, feel good to at
least share this information with a group of teachers who can understand and
relate to my situation. I am thankful for this forum.

I also think it would be interesting to hear what kind of lesson loads we all
have. I have 30 classes a week of 45 minute periods. I also have 6
different preps a day. What about the rest of you?