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Taft High teachers and staff rise to the challenge

Taft+High+is+undergoing+many+changes.+Some+of+which+are+tough+on+everyone%2C+but+the+campus+of+TUHS+appreciates+%22that+we+are+still+able+to+offer+our+students+something+most+other+high+schools+do+not+have+access+to%2C%22+says+Stacey+Stansberry.+As+students+and+as+the+faculty+of+Taft+High%2C+we+all+stand+tall+and+proud+just+like+the+school+has+all+the+many+years+it+has+remained+here.
Taft High is undergoing many changes. Some of which are tough on everyone, but the campus of TUHS appreciates

Taft High is undergoing many changes. Some of which are tough on everyone, but the campus of TUHS appreciates "that we are still able to offer our students something most other high schools do not have access to," says Stacey Stansberry. As students and as the faculty of Taft High, we all stand tall and proud just like the school has all the many years it has remained here.

Jonah Armstrong

Jonah Armstrong

Taft High is undergoing many changes. Some of which are tough on everyone, but the campus of TUHS appreciates "that we are still able to offer our students something most other high schools do not have access to," says Stacey Stansberry. As students and as the faculty of Taft High, we all stand tall and proud just like the school has all the many years it has remained here.

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It’s no surprise that changes have been made, and are still occurring, here on the campus of Taft High. Teachers, students, and the overall staff of Taft High are being affected by these changes–some positive and some negative. From budget cuts to the extra periods added on to the teacher’s schedules, things have been difficult for everyone, but we’re adjusting. Change is unavoidable, so the teachers and staff are trying to go with the flow instead of fighting against it, and embracing what comes next. Many departments have been affected by the increase in workload, but teachers and computers are what students see most often throughout the day.

Some teachers view the extra periods as a negative thing, because it adds more stress onto them, having more things to do and less time to do them. It’s difficult for “… teachers to teach as effectively or with as much energy having six classes,” claims Caroline Schoneweis. The teachers aren’t having enough time to collaborate, prepare for each class, grade papers, or give any kind of feedback and don’t even have “enough time to use the restroom, which shouldn’t be something teachers only do before 7:30 a.m. or after 3:00 p.m. It’s something we joke about, but it’s really not a good thing.”  states Schoneweis. Life definitely isn’t easy for the teachers right now, and it is our job as students to put it in the extra effort to make ours and our teachers life’s a whole lot less of a struggle by showing up and doing our best, just as the teachers are doing.

Not only are things more difficult for students and teachers, but it’s also affecting the I.T. staff as well. When positions became vacant within the department, they tossed around the idea of combining some of the positions in order to be as efficient as possible. They decided to “consolidate two System Network Specialist positions into one position and streamlined some of our systems so they will integrate with each other,” states Stacy Stansberry, Director of Educational Technology & Curricular Innovation. One of the difficult tasks for the department is, “to do more with fewer resources and it sometimes takes us a little longer to fix classroom problems. We also have quite a few student computers that needed repairs over the summer,” claims Stansberry. Even though things seemed hard, the staff of I.T. used their problem-solving skills to solve issues that arose along the way.

   With fewer people, it is harder to get things ready within the usual time period it takes to have them done. The most difficult problem I.T. ran into was at the beginning of the school year when, “We have to set up classrooms and get the devices ready for students. It has taken a little longer than we expected this year to fix classroom problems and get the freshmen their laptops,” said Stansberry. The department was able to rise to the challenge and are, “already planning ways to make improvements for next year.” Although things were more challenging this year, they learned new ways to make improvements for next year.  

Just like most things in life, there is always a bright side; you just have to be willing to see it. Many staff members were okay with voting extra periods in order to, “preserve as many teachers as we could,” claimed John Usery.

Hopefully, the staff and students will come out stronger and will adapt to these new changes together and become a more resilient Taft High. Things don’t stay good forever; there will always come a time of struggle and strife. It’s how we present ourselves through these tough times that really shows the integrity of the school and us as students.

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Taft High teachers and staff rise to the challenge