Thursday, March 15, 2018

A Spanner in the Works

I have two hour class periods with my first year writing course one day a week.  (It's a five hour a week course, so we have one two hour day, and one no class day, and three days of one hour.  It works pretty well.  There are other configurations to choose from, too.)

Yesterday, the students have peer edited their second paper (of four we do in the course, which is highly controlled around here), and it's due tomorrow.   So I'd made time today for the LGBTQ Center on campus to come do SafeSpace training with them.  I think SafeSpace training is really important for all students, and so I make time for it in the first year course when I can.  It ties in nicely with other things we do, like reading about the transition from HS to college and such.

Before the semester began, I emailed the head of the LGBTQ Center to set up a date/time for the training.  I didn't hear back.

So as the semester began, I emailed the Center itself, and got an email back from the graduate assistant, telling me that they'd reserved the date/time.  So I put it in the book.

And now, today, they didn't show up.  So I had students do another activity to prep for the next paper.  But really, I didn't have the assignment ready, and they don't need to start thinking too much about it now, since we'll be working on it after break and they still need to finish the current project.

I called the Center, no answer (they're never in).  I called both numbers on the grad assistant's email, no answer.  And finally, I left a message on the Center's machine.  And emailed the grad assistant (a return email from the one they sent confirming that I was on the calendar).

So now I have some extra time to do grading, which is good.  But my students will miss learning some really important stuff.

If I didn't have class scheduled today, I wouldn't have had to get up at 6am and come in.  (I have to be in my parking lot by about 8am to avoid parking on the far side, and I'm lazy.)  I could have graded at home in my PJs.  Or, you know, I would have planned a different useful activity for my students so they'd learn other good stuff.

Now, I'm just a bit cranky.  Thanks for letting me vent.

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