Author Topic: the power of the press!  (Read 921 times)

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Offline waltertore

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the power of the press!
« on: January 31, 2014, 07:21:05 PM »
The local paper put out a front page article on us Saturday.  Temps were like -25 degrees  and school was canceled all week till yesterday which was aa 2 hour delayed start.  Needless to say this crazy weather has screwed our production schedule all up.  We are way behind on everything and I was excited to get in yesterday and start catching up on our bagels (we freeze them for 2 school districts and a college) and healthy cookies that meet the federal guidelines for the healthy school lunch laws.  We make several thousand cookies a week and about 1,000 bagels a week currently.  Instead  the phone started ringing off the hook yesterday and today to order our pizza.   I figured the story being almost a week old would have been long out of peoples heads but I sure was wrong.  Most callers were people who have relocated out here from the NYC/NJ area.  They are hard up for a real pie.  One guy who owns a beer/wine shop shop drilled me on the phone.  I  told him all about our process amd assured him he would be happy.  When he came in the first thing he did was to open his box, look, smell and smiled.  He gave us $20 for a $10 pie and said he would be in every friday and no longer has to travel back to NYC for a pizza.   That sure felt good.   I had enough 7 day old dough that was sitting since last Thursday to get through Thursday but today we had like 40 orders and all our dough was 24 hour.  I prefer 2-4 day but nobody seemed to mind and I got several calls/emails saying the pies were wonderful.    Between all the stuff we make in a day managing my special needs students, and all the school stuff I have to do,  40 pies a day is pushing me too hard.   I am going to put a cap on 20 a day.  The cool thing is people really read the article which gave detailed instructions on ordering including ordering at least 1 day in advance.   I am going to schedule  no more than 10 pies an hour from 10am-1pm.  This will keep things moving easy and not tax us too much.  I am not going to let quality suffer with rushing.  So now it will get a bit more interesting if this trend continues - people call on a monday and  I say - we are sold out for the next 4 days.   If you would like to put an order in for  Friday we have 8 dough balls left and these time slots..........  How many pies would you like and what time would you like to pick them up?  I dig knowing in advance.  It is the only way our set up will  work smoothly.    I will make a weekly schedule with these time frames and fill them as we take phone orders.  I wish my kids could handle the phone for scheduling  but that would be a mess of messes.   Walter


http://www.newarkadvocate.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014301240031
« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 07:28:22 PM by waltertore »
The Smiling With Hope Bakery- A bakery with a purpose
http://www.newarkadvocate.com/article/20140124/NEWS01/301240031/Bakery-run-by-students-disabilities-earns-pizza-profile

Spontobeat- the spontaneous music concept I have created and how I spontaneously live my life   http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=157137 200 of my most current songs http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=157137&content=widgets


Offline mkevenson

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Re: the power of the press!
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2014, 07:25:44 PM »
WOW ! THE BIG TIME. You deserve it all.

Mark
"Gettin' better all the time" Beatles

Offline waltertore

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Re: the power of the press!
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2014, 07:32:55 PM »
WOW ! THE BIG TIME. You deserve it all.

Mark

Mark:  thanks!  I am digging this order in advance with a template that we fill in.  Once 20 pies are ordered and no more than 10 in a hour, we are done.  With Paige and I making pies 10 an hour is easy and allows for me to deal with screw ups/beharior issues, etc, that come with the turf when teaching special needs students.  Walter
The Smiling With Hope Bakery- A bakery with a purpose
http://www.newarkadvocate.com/article/20140124/NEWS01/301240031/Bakery-run-by-students-disabilities-earns-pizza-profile

Spontobeat- the spontaneous music concept I have created and how I spontaneously live my life   http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=157137 200 of my most current songs http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=157137&content=widgets

Offline dmckean44

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Re: the power of the press!
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2014, 01:19:41 AM »
This is great! This is when the program can start making a lot of money and you can expand with more students with more futures.

Offline waltertore

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Re: the power of the press!
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2014, 09:06:25 AM »
This is great! This is when the program can start making a lot of money and you can expand with more students with more futures.

I wish this was true.  Unfortunately education has gone overboard with college for all.  This has severely impacted special education in that it too has jumped on academics and pretty much abandoned any sort of meaningful life skills training.  My students academic functioning levels are so low that I am able to pull this program off with the support of my supervisors.  Unfortunately almost all these students will never work in an unsupported competitive job.  My 3 students that are working come from the special education class across the  hall and are only on my caseload because their families wanted them in my program.  If left to the system they never would be.  Why?  Because this group functions at the 2-3rd grade level academically and the college for all philosophy is on them all day.  They do 1-3rd grade academics all day (even though they are in 9th-12th grades).  It is insane.  They don't pass the Ohio Graduation Test (OGT) which means they can't get a HS diploma.  They also do not take regular education academic classes and this bars them from a diploma also.   The Ohio Graduation Test  passing score is 39%.  This too is insane.  Where are there higher learning institutes that work with passing scores of 39%?  I think close to 1/2 of our regular education students have to take this more than once to pass and we have a very high rate that never pass.  The kids across the  hall could be employed full time in competitive jobs if I had them for 4 years as proven by the 3 I have that are all working part time while in school. 

So I end up with a group of kids that will never find competitive work and they are in a class that trains for competitive employment and the kids across the hall are in a class that trains in abstract academics and in the 6.5 years I have been here none have passed the OGT, gone onto higher learning degrees and none are employed in competitive jobs other than the 3 that have been switched to my class full time. 

This has been very depressing but I figure if I ran my own shop I would employ at most 2 disabled employees and my students that will never work competitively are learning skills that will help them be successfull in group home living as adults.  I also have a few regular education students that are big time trouble that help a few periods a day and do wonderful.  I can help them find jobs as well.  Finally I can continue to show the community the value of a program like this and things will only change when they throw their votes to this idea.  So I am able to reach more staying in the schools but it stinks having 15 higher functioning kids across the hall that could easily end up in  real jobs if they were in my program. 

Schools are toxic places to work.  The moral of the staff is way low.  They see the meaningless of what they are doing with all this teaching to a test that only requires 39% mastery to pass and many of their students fail it several times or never pass.  The students feel the meaningless of it too and there are lots of dragging feet walking down the hall, outbursts of anger that require our full time police officer to intervene, arrest, taser...........  This is historically a working class town that has lost all the factory work. So what do we do?  We throw nothing but academics at them, tell them they can go to colleg if they try real  hard, and our culture wipes its hands of the shame of so many people living hopeless lives.   

The saddest part is these kids are good kids.   They come from impoverished homes that have little regard for education because they have no education.  Many are in families that came from Appalachia and have not worked since the 70's when the factories began to close.  No computer is going to fix a broken toilet, cut your lawn, make you a meal......  We have a county vocational school but students are not eligible for it until they are juniors.   That means they have to endure 2 years of seat in your seat academics and have at least B's and C's to get into the vocational school.   That is like telling a thirsty man to wait 2 years and he will get some water.....    So they fail most of their classes, can't get in the vocational school, and basically come to school for shelter, free food, and social time during the 5 minute passing periods (lots are late for class) and lunch period.

The federal and state governments make this toxic scenario and the local administrators are not able to legally change anything.  It is a minor miracle that I was able to put this program together in todays educational culture.  I have been able to shape it somewhat by getting these 3 students in my class full time and do a lot of legwork to continue this trend.   I hate going to work in the sense I see so much hopelessness and realize how easily we could change this and yet I am driven to go to work everyday and work with a few that have hope.   A man who many consider the greatest of all time once said along these lines - go to the sick not the well.  I feel I follow that everyday.  I know this is a depressing post but it is the simple truth.  Until we, the educated community, respects and cares about these people, the tragedy will only increase as our economy suffers.  Greed is the root of all evil and I ain't no preacher man but my wife says I should be :) Walter
« Last Edit: February 01, 2014, 09:13:35 AM by waltertore »
The Smiling With Hope Bakery- A bakery with a purpose
http://www.newarkadvocate.com/article/20140124/NEWS01/301240031/Bakery-run-by-students-disabilities-earns-pizza-profile

Spontobeat- the spontaneous music concept I have created and how I spontaneously live my life   http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=157137 200 of my most current songs http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=157137&content=widgets

Offline Chicago Bob

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Re: the power of the press!
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2014, 12:45:21 PM »
Amen brother Walter....you just hang in there man. At least those kids got you on their side.  8)

Bob
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"


 

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