As a new school year begins, students are assigned textbooks, workbooks and various materials for their classes. However, the “Textbook Adoption Year,” a system in which high school departments take turns every year in purchasing new supplies over the summer, resulted in an uneven quantity of used and new supplies for each department. This year, the “Textbook Adoption Year” system allowed the Art department, physical education department and World Languages department to purchase new supplies, while other departments faced a diminishing supply of textbooks and materials.
“It is hard to predict textbook shortages especially since at the beginning of the school year some students change classes,” said Peter Kahl, Administrator for Instructional Services. “While the English and history departments do not have enough supplies, the textbook adoption year will pertain to [the other departments]next school year so that those classes will be able to renew their supplies and textbooks for next year.”
Specifically, the Art department had a new stock of color pencils, brushes, paints and printmaking tools. According to Jin Shin Ekin, high school art teacher, these new supplies will allow students to experiment with new media and will foster more creativity in the students.
“Since I am enrolled in two art courses this year—one of them being an AP course—I find experimentation with different art materials important and exciting,” Yujin Choi (11) said. “There are new pieces and transparent paper, which allowed me to come up with new ways to create my artwork. The new acrylic paint is also less watery than the set we had last year, so many of my projects are of much better quality this year.”
On the other hand, the English department did not start the school year with as many new supplies. Although departments can reorder supplies when there is a deficit, according to Ronald Slachta, Head of the English Department, some books were overlooked while the order was placed for this school year. For example, 120 British Literature students have to share 50 copies of the novel, “1984.”
To deal with shortage, some departments are given the opportunity to ask the administration for a certain amount of money to purchase electronic copies of their textbooks to compensate for a lack of paper copies.