I am sorry if this makes me sound like some far older and more bitter than I should be at 29, but I am so sick and tired of this site serving as a forum for high schoolers to whine and complain that their school districts and drama teachers won't let them run the theater the way they, in their 18 months of "experience" think it should be run.
Here I was, searching the forum to try to find Gaff tape reviews, and I stumble into another one of these threads. I have finally had enough, and must say what has been on my mind for several years now.
First off, stop complaining about the poor conditions of your theater. In an era of educational cuts and funding issues you should be grateful that you have any program, and that you have any sort of space to perform in. I am not saying that conditions should be unsafe, but these constant complaints about limited equipment, or that "we don't have any movers" or "we only have a few S4s"...
Get over it. I started off in a district with no facility of its own. We performed our shows in an 1870s theater that had been renovated once by community volunteers in the 1980s. Hanging a show involved at least a day of digging through the pile of assorted instruments and attempting to assemble a few that worked, and I'm not complaining. I loved it. I was happy to have a place to perform, and to not be in a gymnasium with par cans (which I am sure I would have loved too).
You don't need movers, you don't need source fours, you don't need the state of the art board. Take this time to learn to light with crap, because if you can make crap look good now, when you do get access to fancier toys later in life you will know what to do with them. The principles are all the same. If you give fancy equipment to someone who has never learned to light something, you tend to end up with a truss of gimmicks and a show that looks like something the local DJ hauled in from the back of his minivan.
Secondly, you are a student. You are in your mid teens, and as much as you want to think otherwise you still have very limited knowledge of how the world functions. I don't mean to sound like an ass, but I will admit fully to being the same way when I was 16.
You don't deserve keys to your booth. The district does not need to clear things with you before changing anything in its theater. The band teacher gets to us the lights for his class too. If the director wants the board in the middle of the third row, the board goes in the middle of the third row.
Your theater program and your district has insurance companies, parents, unions, board members and a host of other people it needs to answer to before you get your say in how its facilities should be run. Decisions are often made with these groups in mind, or with a larger picture being considered. You will be out of this school district in a very short time but the staff may be thinking of the next few decades rather than just this show.
I'm sorry. I think it is great that younger students are this passionate and involved, but get over yourselves. Nobody stands up in the middle of a math class and argues that their method of differentiation should be used, why is theater so much different. And honestly, good luck getting, or rather, preserving a job with that attitude. Carry this "I know what I'm doing because..." attitude out in the world, and see how far it actually gets you.