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Teacher Poverty Workshop

Updated: Friday, August 2 2013, 10:18 PM EDT
Some local teachers take part in an eye opening workshop.  Through role play they get to experience what it's like to live in poverty.

It's a room full of frustrated and disappointed people at Johnston Elementary school.  The staff is participating in a poverty simulation.

They're given a minimum amount of money to take care of all of their basic needs..like housing, utilities, food, health care and child care.
Unfortunately, many of them come up short.

The workshop is conducted by the non-profit "Just Economics".
They want the teachers and administrators to understand what many of their students families may be experiencing at home.

Janna Joekema, media specialist, "understanding what their frustrations are and how to try and do away with some of what they're dealing with and to try and relate to them is I think very important for us as teachers."
Jonathan Basset, school counselor, "really understanding the situation the people are in that they're dealing with more people than just me..they're dealing with all of these different agencies and resources and they're overwhelmed."

Kiki Alimonos, educator, "as part of my reflection my child said you never asked us how our day was you never gave us a hug after you picked us up you never did anything with us you just carted us around to all of these place just to pay the bills. And it was true I didn't realize that, until they said it."

Just for this workshop only, the pawn shop dealer tried to get as much money from the participants as possible, in hopes of helping them understand what it's like to be without a bank account.Teacher Poverty Workshop


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