It wasn't just journalism, my favorite class, which cost a lot of money to run (after all, you need money to print a paper!)-- it was science, it was history, it was world lit. It didn't matter whether it was elementary school, when parents seemed to have more time, energy, and money to donate to classroom expenditures and events; it was middle school and high school, too.
I've been in classes where teachers had to pay for their own materials, in classes where the teachers had to ask parents for help with funding, and in classes where the students didn't GET to use modern technology, go on field trips, or even use basic, new equipment.
I've had to use books more than 20 years old, falling apart at the seams. I've had to pay out of pocket to keep my school supplies in shape, because I can't rely on the ones provided at school. Early on, I started to assume that I had to bring supplies that normally, people would figure students wouldn't HAVE to-- things like construction paper, scissors, glue, or markers. That's why I have so many art supplies NOW-- because I've kept them over the years, made sure they've stayed in good condition, and shared them with my fellow students.
It's a sad situation, when you think about it. Out of all the high schools I visited in San Francisco (mostly when I was at a JROTC event), only ONE really looked like it had everything it needed, and that all their students could really be happy, motivated, and productive in their classroom. San Francisco is a major metropolitan city. There are six
"big" high schools with thousands of students each, and lots more charter and alternative schools. That's not even going into the elementary and middle schools that need help.
Now, thanks to SixApart and DonorsChoose.org, I'm participating in the Bloggers Challenge to help raise money for a variety of projects (proposals started by teachers at San Francisco schools!) in San Francisco. Unfortunately, none of my alma maters are listed, but that doesn't mean I want to help any less.
Whether you're from San Francisco or not, once you read some of these teachers' proposals (and often impassioned pleas), you'll want to help to. Whether it's a dollar or ten, every donation can and DOES make a difference. Not only will you be recognized for your donation, but it's tax-deductible as well.
* This is a regional challenge, for San Francisco-based schools only. Why? Because San Francisco is my hometown, and when I go back for a visit, I would love to see my few dollars making a BIG difference for kids that were just like me five, ten, fifteen, or eighteen years ago.
* I'm adding several teacher proposals (as of 4:48pm on 9/28, there are 8 to choose from, ranging from PreK to high school) to my Bloggers Challenge, because there are a number of schools in need for a variety of different reasons. I don't think any one project has priority over another, so I want to include as many as I can. If you have a suggestion for a proposal to add to my challenge, send me the link to let me know! Some of the proposals I've added have a greater target goal than my challenge does; that's because I believe EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS.
Click on this link to see all the proposals I have currently added to my challenge. You can click on each individual proposal to read more about that teacher's particular situation, as well as see their target goal, how much they've already raised, and how many students are impacted by the efforts made so far. Then you can click to fund one proposal or all of them.
* SixApart has already graciously given me a $30 gift certificate to donate to one of the proposals on my challenge, and I've chosen the "Books That Add Spice" one. I'll match that $30 with money of my own for another one of the proposals on my challenge, and I hope you can, too!