Students prevented from printing at school

Teachers required to authorize use of printers


Megan Hoenie

A Park teacher prints using the At-Large Lab printer. According to librarian Ellen George, students and teachers will now be using different printers.

Samantha Klepfer

In high school, it is required for many classes that students print assignments. In some cases, it’s required that students print during their class period. When students aren’t able to perform this integral job, it slows down classes and other school functions.

Many students utilize the printers in the Library Media Center (LMC) to print before, during or after school. Teachers want paper copies of essays, outlines and other documents. Since students aren’t able to print to the LMC printer themselves, they have to ask the LMC staff to do it for them. According to Ellen George, LMC Media Specialist this takes away time from the other work they have as library staff. This new policy is a big inconvenience for the LMC staff, simply because of the near-constant flow of students who need to print something at any given time during the school day. 

Some students can print at their house, and a number of them do. However, for some students, printing assignments outside of school can get complicated considering not everyone has a printer at their home. At the Hennepin County Library, you have to pay to use the printers and even when students own a printer, ink and paper can be expensive.

Arguably, such necessities are expensive for the school as well, but since teachers are requiring printed assignments for class, the school has a responsibility to provide the necessary resources for students to be able to, at minimum, turn the assignment in. 

This isn’t just a problem for students, it impacts teachers as well. Because students can’t print at school, they might turn in assignments later. Since some teachers ask students to print assignments in class, this can waste class time while students wait for their teacher to print all their individual papers. Additionally, this system causes the printers to be slower and less efficient because each print request needs to be approved individually and the printer won’t allow teachers to approve multiple print requests at once. Overall, the new policy does far more harm than good for students and staff.