“I Have No Toilet Paper”: Hartford Head Custodian

Chanting and carrying signs, Hartford teachers rallied before Tuesday night's Board of Education meeting and then brought their concerns to the table.

"School is on the 31st and I have no toilet paper. Again," said Levey Kardulis, the president of the custodian's union.

Less than two weeks before school starts, Kardulis said he has no supplies and fewer custodians to clean and prepare the classrooms.

"Since last year, June 30th, Dr. Adamowski, we have lost 100,000 manpower hours and we want to get the job done," Kardulis said, looking directly at Supt. Dr. Steven Adamowski.

Some teachers said they can't even get into their classrooms to get them ready because they haven't been cleaned.

"It's very sad we have to go through this every year about money, about supplies we need and nothing gets done," Janet Harwell, a middle school teacher, said.

The Hartford Federation of Teachers claims Adamowski is spending money on labor attorneys to bust up the union, when he should be spending it on education.

"We have a labor attorney that has been with us for the past nine years. It's not an additional expense," David Medina, the Director of External Communication for Hartford Public Schools, said.

He wouldn't comment specifically on the union's claims that the district now wants to impose a use tax on union officer's wages.

"I am not at liberty to discuss specifics about it. It's now in the hands of the attorneys. It's a legal matter and we will let them work it out," Medina said.

At the rally, teachers chanted, "Hey hey! Ho ho! Adamowski has to go."

District officials said those calls detract from the progress that has been made in the past two years.

"What's really unfortunate is this is coming right on the heels of our second straight year of record test score increases," Medina said. "I hate to take away from that because it's really supposed to be all about the kids."

But teachers said that's exactly why they're frustrated with the district's spending decisions.

I think if they would get in the classroom and see what was going on, then maybe they'd have a change of heart," Janet Harwell said.

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