|Heavy workloads have made sleeping at |
school a necessity for some teachers
Sara is not alone. Teachers in Arizona began sleeping at their schools last year after their districts began providing on-site sleeping accommodations. According to the National Center on Time and Learning, a nonprofit research group in Boston, about 100 schools - more than 90 of them charter schools - across the country provide sleeping accommodations for their teachers. Martin Shell, Tucson school board president is convinced it will ultimately benefit students. "It really is a time saver for our employees. Now as soon as they wake up, they can work. The more time teachers are at work, the more work they do and we are convinced that will result in higher test scores."
Although it may sound extreme, some teachers seem to make the most of it. Darren Smithfield, who teaches seventh grade math in Tucson, showed us around his classroom/bedroom. His desk discreetly hid the cot and contained his toothbrush and electric razor. "My wife came by and visited on Wednesday night. It was nice, we ate together in the cafeteria, the kids read books in the library while she and I talked about what we would do this weekend if they let me leave, I mean if I go home." He added quickly, "And you know the cot is not so bad, you get used to it after a while."
The cots were paid for by a generous grant from the Walton Foundation while the blankets and pillows were given by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Reality Alert:Interested in how we came to write this? Read Survey: Teachers Work 53 Hours Per Week On Average