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District says Richmond County teachers have textbooks

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It's a complaint Richmond County school board members say they hear often, especially in the first few weeks of a school year: "My child doesn't have any textbooks."

Biology teacher Joey Martin collects textbooks at the Academy of Richmond County. Principal Tim Spivey said that not every class has traditional textbooks because some classes use workbooks. 
  Zach Boyden-Holmes/Staff
Zach Boyden-Holmes/Staff
Biology teacher Joey Martin collects textbooks at the Academy of Richmond County. Principal Tim Spivey said that not every class has traditional textbooks because some classes use workbooks.

Yet district officials say that more often than not, after investigating such complaints, they find that teachers have those textbooks.

"The books are not being used" in some cases, Thaddeus McKinnie, the school district's instructional materials manager, said during a recent school board meeting.

"What we ask is that people with questions call me."

McKinnie said principals have discretion over how textbooks are used.

They might choose to not allow students to take them home but only have them in school.

Or they can -- if enough textbooks are available -- even have a set that stays in the classroom and another set that stays at home for students to use until the end of the school year.

The state Department of Education adopts lists of textbooks it recommends that align with the Georgia Performance Standards. Each school district then chooses which textbooks to adopt, and districts typically select ones from state lists, which are revised on a six-year cycle.

The state board in August approved state-recommended lists for fine arts, social studies, health and physical education and advanced mathematical decision-making courses.

Academy of Richmond County Principal Tim Spivey said last week that his policy is to issue one set of textbooks that students use in the classroom and at home as needed. However, not every class has traditional textbooks.

For example, Spivey said, Math I, II and III have workbooks, not textbooks, "that the students actually write and calculate in."

"As far as I know, we do not have a shortage of textbooks," he said.

But that might not be the case everywhere. McKinnie's statement that teachers sometimes choose not to use textbooks that are given to them surprised board member Venus Cain at that meeting, held earlier this fall.

"I would think if the books were there, they would use them," she said. "If not, they would volunteer to give them back so that if there is a shortage somewhere, they could be used."

"No," McKinnie responded. "They will hide the books."

In at least one case last year, a teacher did give out textbooks to students but didn't use them in class.

"Principals need to hold teachers accountable to see if they are using the books or not," said board member Jimmy Atkins.

"I know my eighth-grade daughter last year never used a book (in one class). She left it in her locker all year, and she had to pay damage charges."

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Martinez
154
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Martinez 11/22/10 - 06:54 am
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When large numbers of kids

When large numbers of kids don't come to class or make habit of moving from school to school - - keeping up with text books becomes more difficult. While a teacher may have enough to give one to every student this year, he/she may not want to do so knowing books won't be re-ordered for a few more years and that he/she will never get half of those books back or back in usable condition. Didn't one of our local schools give out laptops a few years ago? How did that work out? How many kids had it by year end? How about the next year?

RAINBOW
11
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RAINBOW 11/22/10 - 08:54 am
0
0
How is a teacher gonna teach

How is a teacher gonna teach without books?I wouldnt thnk thay have learned they books that well.

scoobynews
3771
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scoobynews 11/22/10 - 09:09 am
0
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If anyone remembers the

If anyone remembers the article a few months ago that clearly stated that most textbooks are made based on national standards not state. That means that not only will the book have some of the state standards but a ton of other stuff that is not. Nor do they fully cover the state standards even though it may have the word GEORGIA stamped across it. The textbook I have for my class is totally useless except for the resources such as maps, dictionary, and a few reading selections that cover the ridiculous standards that we have adopted. If your curious to see what exactly your child has to learn because a few select individuals in Atlanta said so go to Georgia Performance Standards website and just go to frameworks. I tell parents everytime we have a conference that taking home the textbook is a waste of their child's time. I give them everything they need - notes, handouts, maps, and even the power point if they want it. I really don't understand parents obbession with books. A kid can open a book and pretent to read or work out of it if that is what pleases them. That does not mean they are actually learning a thing. I bought many college level books that I barely cracked open and read yet I managed to graduate. Gone are the days of learning from the book. If you really watch your kids they learn in a multitude of ways and research has proven that books are not always the only way for a child to learn.

bettyboop
7
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bettyboop 11/22/10 - 09:11 am
0
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," McKinnie responded. "They

," McKinnie responded. "They will hide the books."......Sorry but this makes no sense...why are teachers so paranoid about the books?...Whats the point of just "having" them and not useing them and worring about if none will be avaiable later on when,...... THEY DONT USE THEM???? Makes the teachers sound like a bunch of nutty hoarders.

mystery30815
18
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mystery30815 11/22/10 - 10:02 am
0
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They hide them because

They hide them because perhaps they have small class sizes this year and don't need them all. If they let the board know they have them and they are not being used the board will take them to another school. So, next year when that teachers has bigger classes, they have a shortage in books, and the school their books went to will "hide" them so no one else can use them.

avidreader
2933
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avidreader 11/22/10 - 10:26 am
0
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With the new English Language

With the new English Language adoption (2010), each student gets a hardcover text and a full-text CD Rom to keep at home. However, teachers cannot keep extra texts in the classroom unless the teacher personally checks out the books from the media center. If a teacher checks out four or five "loaners" for the kids to use, the teacher is responsible for the $86. price tag for each book. Text books tend to be a popular item to steal because many kids want a copy at home and at school. How many teachers want to take personal responsibility for $400. in books?

whodunitnow
0
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whodunitnow 11/22/10 - 10:33 am
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This article is simply not

This article is simply not true! Teachers have no control over books in the schools, media specialist issue and maintain books. I know of 3 schools where teachers have requested and requested books, yet, they were never received. Perhaps the board should look at the people who are giving them this misinformation and putting the blame back on teachers or perhaps look at the curriculum personnel who are sending out instructions to the teachers that are off the mark; that it is confusing teachers, students and parents. The truth of the matter is that teachers have little control over what they are to teach, how they are to teach it and from what (textbooks etc.) they are to teach from. Teachers in RCSS are so frustrated and confused it is unbelievable; from the huge number of unnecessary meetings, lack of supplies, to include textbooks, to the lack of support for disciplinary problems. In 2010 the system is adding teacher portfolios, classkeys crap, and AYP initiatives, which makes the expectation to achieve success in any of these areas almost impossible! Because teachers no longer have planning time because of instructional meetings, they are forced to come in early and stay late each day for additional meetings with no compensation for the additional time spent. If you overwhelm the teachers, overwhelm the students and parents; do you really think that you can achieve the goals that are set by the district? All this and you still manage to furlough the teachers, and heap on more responsibility and accountability daily. How can the system maintain professional teachers with 4, 5 or 6 years of higher education? The average teacher makes what is equivalent or less than a McDonald's restaurant manager that requires none of these credentials. I have spoken to several teachers this year who state that they feel like they spend have of the instructional period disciplining unruly students, and the other amount of time, following guidelines set for their scripted classroom by the district and state. Most of those I have spoke with state, they feel they are chasing their tails this year and are accomplishing nothing. Scoobynews, yes, the frameworks are great, but when you don't have the ample or up-to-date technology, copy paper or copies, what good is any of this, if you lack the materials or the time to utilize it correctly. At this point, textbooks become an essential resource.

On another note, I would love to see the Augusta Chronicle, study on the number of teachers who will leave in January and the end of this school year, I think the findings would be quite alarming add to that a study about the hiring, and promoting practices in RCSS and you will find that study even more alarming.

MajorPaul
0
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MajorPaul 11/22/10 - 01:04 pm
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A lot of the books are not

A lot of the books are not written very well, and some teachers might prefer to actually teach something, not the drivel in the text book. I know the History books Richmond Country uses are very poorly written, and written from a very narrow minded perspective.
On the other hand, a good portion of the students who have been issued text books leave them in their lockers and never bring them to class anyway.

mable8
2
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mable8 11/22/10 - 03:14 pm
0
0
Without the textbooks, how

Without the textbooks, how does the good teacher expect the student to learn, complete homework assignments, and keep up with other classes? Ordering textbooks at taxpayer expense and not letting the children use them is about the most asinine thing ever to grace the stagnant thinking of our illustrious educators. No wonder home schooling has begun to rise--teachers do not teach because they don't know how to.

scoobynews
3771
Points
scoobynews 11/22/10 - 05:10 pm
0
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Mable8 your welcome to come

Mable8 your welcome to come do my job any day ;)! Also had you bothered to READ some of the comments above you would know that we are not in control of the books. I could care less about the textbooks. Let them keep them at home all year if they want just bring them back in May some the next batch can take them home in August.

Ushouldnthave
0
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Ushouldnthave 11/22/10 - 08:00 pm
0
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Really Rainbow? "I wouldnt

Really Rainbow? "I wouldnt thnk thay have learned they books that well." Apparently they withheld your English text books the entire time.

luckie
2
Points
luckie 11/22/10 - 11:16 pm
0
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Sometimes books come in

Sometimes books come in during the summer and instead of the books being placed in the media center they are placed in the book room thus a lack of communication of procedures are not clear at a level outside of the classroom.

Explorer
0
Points
Explorer 11/23/10 - 01:05 am
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This article is not true!!

This article is not true!!

Little Lamb
43370
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Little Lamb 11/23/10 - 11:47 am
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School Board Trustee Jimmy

School Board Trustee Jimmy Atkins said:

"I know my eighth-grade daughter last year never used a book (in one class). She left it in her locker all year, and she had to pay damage charges."

Did her Snickers bar melt all over the book in the locker?

stupid
0
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stupid 11/25/10 - 11:44 pm
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In reply to whodunitnow...You

In reply to whodunitnow...You are exactly right RCSS has no control over textbooks and each high school rides off thousands of $$$ lost every year to the seniors who graduate and students leaving a high school without paying a single dime!!! Administrators don't understand the process of how textbooks are to be managed in the school system! Other items such as the promoting practices should investigated for RCSS.

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