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Haley23 Haley23 is offline
 
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No shared supplies
Old 07-31-2021, 05:16 PM
 
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The "no shared supplies" rule last year was a huge PITA in my position because I teach different small groups all day long and obviously typically reuse basic supplies for each group.

Last spring, P said that although most precautions were going away (ha) she anticipated no shared supplies staying because it's "easy to implement." I explained why it's not easy in my position, said that we've known since very early on the virus doesn't spread that way anyway, and she said she understood and that it was fine for me to use communal supplies as long as I had kids wash their hands.

Now, of course things are different. My district hasn't released the "new plan" yet but I assume this will be on there because again, admins think it's easy to do, so why not.

Would you ask again about the supplies, or forgo asking permission and ask for forgiveness later if needed? I could say I was going off of what she originally told me which was that I could share in my program as long as kids washed hands. We have a lot of newer teachers and no one really bothers with doing walkthroughs in my room anymore, so it's likely not to get noticed.

If I ask, and she says no, things have changed, what will have to happen is that I have students bring their supply bins from their gen ed rooms. I'll have far more students this year since we're not cohorting, and I don't have enough supplies to make them all a bin just for my room even if I wanted to. Then what will happen is they won't have the supplies needed for my lesson, or they're supposed to but they've lost/forgotten that thing, and I have to give the majority of them a marker or whatever from the community pile anyway. Same result, but we get to waste a bunch of time first .


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"Shared Supplies"
Old 07-31-2021, 06:02 PM
 
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I'll be honest, I hope I don't get flamed.

We were told no shared supplies either this past year. Now, I didn't collect supplies and say "These are shared supplies that we all use", but I let kids borrow/use supplies of others with permission just like normal. Kid can't find a pencil? Borrow from someone. Kid needs a specific color crayon/marker they don't have? Borrow. I also played dice games and had kids touching dice and switching, etc. My class was in person all year with no one getting COVID. No quarantines for my class.

Obviously you have to wait and see what the directives are, but I'd do what you need to do. If someone calls you on it, play dumb. If another teacher calls you on it, I'd smile and keep doing what I was doing until the principal herself said something specific to me.
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Old 07-31-2021, 06:23 PM
 
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If something is so easily caught that using scissors another child used earlier in the day canít be done, why is it ok for pull out classes to share desks /chairs / tables?

Agree with this
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do what you need to do. If someone calls you on it, play dumb. If another teacher calls you on it, I'd smile and keep doing what I was doing until the principal herself said something specific to me.
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Old 07-31-2021, 06:39 PM
 
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We have the same position. My plan is to ask forgiveness rather than permission.

Iíve found as the resource teacher no one cares what I do (Iím assuming itíll be the same in my new building) so I donít think anyone will notice what Iím doing with the supplies.
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Old 07-31-2021, 10:18 PM
 
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Thanks! The only thing I have to worry about is the intervention block. If the interventionists ask, then there will probably be a new blanket rule. I might try to get to them first.

When my P first came to the building she and the IC did walkthroughs of every room during the intervention block frequently. A couple of years later, we got a ton of new teachers and they got too busy to do that. No one has done a walkthrough in my room in 2+ years, but we do have a new IC. So hopefully she doesn't think she's being "fair" and decide to come to my room .

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If something is so easily caught that using scissors another child used earlier in the day can’t be done, why is it ok for pull out classes to share desks /chairs / tables?
I was actually supposed to wipe down all of the tables and chairs between groups last year . I gave that up pretty quickly and ended up just doing the tables.

I predict the "new plan" will have all of the "safety theater" elements because those didn't have a huge impact on learning but the district can say they're still doing something- temp/symptom checks, increased cleaning, no shared supplies, etc. Maybe masks. Cohorting/quarantining will be out because that had a huge impact on learning. We'll see when it's released- but that's my prediction.



Last edited by Haley23; 07-31-2021 at 11:08 PM..
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Old 08-01-2021, 06:57 AM
 
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I completely agree that the hygiene theater was total nonsense. It was known fairly early on that the plague wasnít spreading by touch, but ďsanitizingĒ was one thing people had actual control over, so it stayed to give people an illusion of safety. Hereís my but. If the guidelines state that there are to be no shared supplies, desks and tables are to be wiped down, etc. and you disregard those guidelines, you may find yourself held personally liable if someone contracts the plague and it is traced back to your classroom. The chances are remote for sure, but the outcomes could be catastrophic. Just something else to worry about because none of us have enough right now.
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Old 08-01-2021, 07:41 AM
 
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I agree with Englishish. Even if we think a particular precaution is unnecessary, if you don't follow it and someone gets sick, you open yourself up to liability.

I follow all of the precautions my district outlined because that's what parents are told is happening. As a parent, I'd be upset if I found out after the fact that a precaution I believed was important wasn't being followed.

How many students do you see and what supplies do you use? Have you ever asked other teachers for extra supplies? Every year I give supplies to other teachers.

Are there some supplies that are easily sanitized that you could gove a quick spray after they are collected?
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Old 08-01-2021, 08:28 AM
 
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Can you spray it all down after each group? My district gave us spray to spray down the desks so I would probably just have the students leave the supplies on their desk or tables and I'd spray it all. Or if the next group doesn't need those same supplies I'd have them put it on a table or bin of "dirty" supplies and spray that down.

In district, the next class coming in was supposed to get a paper towel and dry their desk, so I'd do that with the supplies.
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Old 08-01-2021, 09:42 AM
 
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Honestly, by the end of last year I had stopped worrying about shared supplies. It was easy at the beginning of the year, because we were directed to see students in their classrooms / maintain cohort groups, so they just used their own supplies. By 4th quarter when we had had very few cases of the virus in students, I had pretty much started seeing kids (still cohort groups, as much as possible - but not always achievable as new students qualified) in my room and using shared supplies.

Also, at the beginning of the year all classes were super vigilant about sanitizing shared supplies and toys each day, but by the end of the year the prek and kindergarten classes had pretty much stopped doing that, as well. Again, after months of no cases in those age groups.

Now, with the new variations of the virus that seems to spread to kids easier, who knows what the plan will be.
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Supplies
Old 08-01-2021, 05:04 PM
 
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I teach small group intervention...three to four students at a time.

I bought some plastic rectangular with rounded corner containers I would usually use for leftovers at home. They had red covers and were long enough to fit three pencils, pencil eraser, two dice, black marker for individual white boards, marker eraser, and red crayon for sight word practice. Each child had a container and these were stored in classroom mailboxes along with the child's white board. We used markers and colored pencils so seldom, that I didn't worry about them.

When it came to math manipulatives, I planned so that if a group was using pattern blocks, another group would use color tiles, another group would use red/yellow coins, etc. For the most part, I could teach the same skills using a variety of manipulatives, so germs were not passed around. At the end of my morning classes, I would spray everything by laying it on my tabletop and give it time to dry. Then I would put it away for use on another day.

Things made of cardstock like number cards or flashcards were color coded. Each child knew his/her color and then those were the materials just for that child. It was labor intensive to make these materials to begin with, but it worked out well.


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Old 08-01-2021, 06:46 PM
 
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I don't think the liability issue would happen but that's a good point to consider. Last year we had almost no cases in my building (lots of quarantines, but they'd end when the student tested and it was negative) but if this new variant really is more contagious for kids maybe it will be different. That almost makes me think maybe I do need to ask again and just plead my case.

If P says no, it is what it is. My P is really, really big on structure and pacing, especially in intervention settings. So that's partially why I think wasting a minute digging around for supplies every time we need something is such a big deal. Connie, I did exactly what you described last year, but I only had about 16 students. This year I will have 35-40 and they will also change every 5-6 weeks with new intervention cycles. I don't have enough materials to make 40 bins (nor the space to store them) and I don't spend money on my classroom. I know that's a foreign concept to some teachers, but I strongly believe that professionals shouldn't be buying their own supplies.

Last year when I was doing observations for IEP eval reports, every single time the teacher would say, "Get out your markers and erasers (or insert any supply)," and at least half of the class wouldn't have whatever it was and the teacher would hand out markers from the community supply. So it's not really happening in any classroom, but if I have the kids drag those bins back and forth there would be the illusion that it's happening, for any potential liability issues. If it were a real health and safety issue I could see really working on a plan even if it's a PITA. But we've known since literally like a month into the pandemic that it doesn't spread on surfaces. It's 100% safety theater. So why are we still doing it??
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Old 08-01-2021, 07:47 PM
 
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If all else fails and you have to do individual things, maybe the principal or PTO would be willing to spring for pencil pouches. Each student could keep 1-2 pencils and eraser in it, as well as any other supplies they might need.

https://www.amazon.com/JARLINK-Multi...%2C187&sr=1-16

These look like wouldn't take up as much space, and if you have wall or bulletin board space, you could hang them.
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Old 08-02-2021, 04:36 AM
 
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It sure is a PITA, but there's no way I'd go against policy on this one. Liability could be huge. I'd ask admin to find me a workable solution, so I'm off the hook for it and have that in writing! Seems like overkill, but I don't need my a$$ sued over some kid who puts their hands in their mouth and touches something. Yes, I know that they've said it doesn't spread that way, but I'm not willing to risk it.
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Old 08-02-2021, 08:53 AM
 
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I got tired of buying pencil cases each year. I used quartz sized freezer bags that I reinforced with a piece of packing tape on the bottom. They were used by my class. Your groups would use them much less so they should last the year.

I agree with not skirting around the rules because your liability is not worth the risk.

Good luck!
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Old 08-08-2021, 07:35 PM
 
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Would you ask again about the supplies, or forgo asking permission and ask for forgiveness later if needed?
I would ask for forgiveness. I don't see liability as being an issue, since COVID could be gotten from outside school especially when the class is not affected.
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