The new Lincoln portables opened on Sept. 27th, exactly one month into the school year.
Before the opening, hundreds of students made the half-mile trek every day to attend class in the First United Methodist Church at S.W. 18th and Jefferson.
Along with students, teachers were forced to adjust.
Social sciences teacher Gary Pearlz is one teacher who was affected. Throughout September, he taught one class on campus and the rest at FUMC.
“I try not to complain about things because in the end it is a pretty small issue, but it’s a lot of mental energy remembering ‘Okay, what do I need to bring,’” said Pearlz.
He also noted that many of the community-building activities he usually implements into his curriculum had to be cut out to cope with the shorter class periods in the church.
Another social sciences teacher, David Bailey, teaches all of his classes at FUMC and has a different take on teaching there.
“I can drive right [to the church] and park my car, I don’t even have to go into [Lincoln],” said Bailey about the temporary facility. He added that the church doesn’t have “the noise and the distraction.”
While both teachers had different takes on the situation, both complimented FUMC on their graciousness.
“We were all very happy to step up and be of service to our Lincoln neighbors,” said FUMC Church Administrator Liz Temple. “Any new situation can be both exciting and a little nerve wracking as adjustments are made, but the folks from the Lincoln and PPS were very capable and easy to find solutions with.”
Now that the portables are open, and students have begun class, Gary Pearlz has been able to reflect on his new teaching space.
“We have lots of natural light, we have air conditioning, we have fans, it’s a great space and we’re working out the furniture and all that, and pretty soon it will feel like home,” he says.
Pearlz added that the focus of school should be the education and not the facilities. “[The new classroom has] been nice enough that you don’t notice it.”