"[I]f I had to live my life again, I would have made a rule to read some poetry and listen to some music at least once every week…The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness, and may possibly be injurious to the intellect, and more probably to the moral character, by enfeebling the emotional part of our nature." --Charles Darwin

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Bless you

Admittedly, my experience as a teacher is not exhaustive. I have only worked in three schools full time and substituted in perhaps half-a-dozen other buildings. But as far as I know, schools never provide tissues. Why is that? We need tissues, teachers and students alike. Without them, we can become germ broadcasters, potentially wreaking germ war upon our community. But though we are provided with pens, paper, markers, scissors, chalk, sharpies, glue, tape, paper clips, staples, staplers and even glitter (not to mention $10,000 SmartBoards and such things) no one sees fit to give us a box of tissues.

Before I became a teacher, working in the private sector, large corporations who employed me provided tissues: Hallmark Cards, NBC and the William Morris Agency all seemed to feel that boxes of tissues were not so damaging to the bottom line that they could not be provided to us employees.

In elementary and middle schools, we can count on concerned parents to bring those tissues in. Everyone knows how drippy and snotty little kids can get. I even offered bonus points to my middle schoolers for a box of tissues. But in high school, I guess we are just supposed to live with being sick and let the mucous fall where it may.

So what happens in high school? Teachers buy tissues and bring them in. This is not a huge hardship. But it makes no sense. The only alternative is disruptive to the class, sending a student to the bathroom to get a stack of rough paper towels, which, over the course of a day of the sniffles, will remove six or seven layers of epidermis from your upper lip. Given the cheapness of the commodity and its importance to basic hygiene, why must it become the responsibility of each instructor?

Am I missing something? Besides tissues, I mean?

No comments:

Post a Comment