Five duPont Manual High teachers offer observations as they become students for a day

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Five teachers at duPont Manual High School teachers have moved from the front of the classroom to taking seats with students.

Manual's principal, Jerry Mayes, asked for teachers to volunteer to become students after another teacher sent him this article from the Washington Post: Teacher spends two days as a student and is shocked at what she learns.

Five teachers volunteered: Rebecca Donahoe, Megan Gatewood, James Miller, Liz Palmer and Connie Wilcox.

It's part of a two-day program where the teachers become "students for a day."

(Previous Story: KONZ: Five duPont Manual High teachers to see what life as a student is really like)

The experiment started Thursday and continued on Friday. Substitute teachers filled in for the five teachers who are out of their classes.

The teachers took on full student schedules, complete with backpacks full of books and lunch in the school cafeteria.

They went around to different classrooms, seeing what it's like when the tables are turned.

The school's assistant principal," Greg Kuhn, says it's just a different approach to try to better understand the students.

"It puts more eyes and ears into what's going on in our classrooms, even if only anecdotally," Kuhn said. "But it allows us to continue to move forward and make changes where needed."

Miller, a journalism teacher, arrived early Thursday and found his locker.

"A passing student said 'No one uses their locker!'" said Miller, in a tweet.

About mid-day, Miller ate a school lunch of barbecued chicken, a wheat roll, baked beans and orange. 

His observation? "Not enough time to eat and no seats in cafeteria."

After Gatewood took an Advanced Placement Physics test, she tweeted: "Looks like I should have studied more. These students are handling it much better than me."

At the end of the day, Wilcox noted: "Classes over, extracurricular over. Having a hearty meal before homework. I'm going to try to put in at least two hours."

Palmer added: "Looking forward to writing about this. But right now I'm just tired from sitting so much."

The teachers will again be tweeting about their experiences again today, using the hashtag, #SFAD.

Reporter Antoinette Konz can be reached at 585-0838 or @tkonz on Twitter.

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