Dear teachers: pupils are here to learn, not to run your errands

Let’s say that the printer in your classroom is out of ink. Do you:

  1. Use the specially-designed “quick request” system on the school Intranet to request a new one. Time taken: 30s.
  2. Because it’s super urgent (and you never pay attention when you’re shown the 3 mouse clicks it takes to use the request system), call the IT office directly to ask for a new cartridge. Time taken: 30s.
  3. Send 2 pupils out of your class to walk over to the IT office (without even checking if the office is staffed) to relay an incomplete request for a new cartridge, while you sit at your desk marking work from another class. Pupil time taken: 4-5 minutes (x2) minimum.

If you picked option 3, you are a turd bag. You have deliberately squandered pupil learning time simply because your 30s is apparently too important to deal with an issue that prevents your entire class from finishing their assignment. Instead, you’ve chosen to rob two unwitting pupils of around 15% of their lesson time. The problem you need fixing takes longer to fix, and those pupils are now at a disadvantage compared to the rest of the class.

How exactly can this be justified?


About The Angry Technician

The Angry Technician is an experienced IT professional in the UK education sector. Normally found in various states of annoyance on his blog. All views are those of his imaginary pet dog, Howard.

5 responses to “Dear teachers: pupils are here to learn, not to run your errands”

  1. Parent says :

    Training young people to run errands/do favours/ go out of their way to help someone and others is not a complete waste of time. Plus it technical staff who sit around all day browsing the web might not fully grasp how annoying new “it urgent request” systems are? Sounds a little up themselves sometimes.

    • The Angry Technician says :

      The ‘new’ request system is 4 years old. And if you think all IT staff do is sit around browsing the web, then someone here is definitely up themselves – but its not me.

  2. Richard Allen says :

    What’s your request system that you use?

    • The Angry Technician says :

      It’s bespoke – all the users have to do for printer requests is pick the room the printer is in from a list, pick the printer (if there’s more than one), then pick what colour cartridge they need.

  3. Vijay says :

    Do you Reddit? Subscribers to the r/talesfromtechsupport subeditor would love to hear your stories.

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