This is the sort of post that I thought twice about writing. Not because I am afraid to speak my mind but because it is possible that my words could have a negative impact upon my children.
I don’t really expect that to happen, but it would be foolish of me not to take a moment to consider whether there could be fall out. Excuse me for a moment while I take my customary two minutes to think about.
And we’re back.
My children are receiving a terrific education at the private school they attend. This makes me very happy because sending them there has come with a significant amount of stress.
That is not because their education is inferior but because it costs a boatload of money to send them there. Unless you are interested in listening to me rant don’t ask me why they haven’t gone to a public school. Had there been a good choice it would have happened but because we live in a land of misguided priorities we’re more concerned about making sure that Tom isn’t able to legally wed Dick.
God forbid that happen because if we made it legal Tom might find little Dick and do things with it that I am not supposed to write about in a family blog. And we all know that the best way to prevent something from happening is to say no or declare it illegal. It works so well.
Anyhoo, education is of paramount importance to us. Your material possessions can be taken from you, but your education can’t. So when the time came to send the children off to school we chose the private school because at that time there wasn’t a good public school option nor was it possible to move.
Private School Challenges
The second most irritating part of private school (tuition being the first) is that fundraising needs push big donors into positions of prominence and influence. I understand that it is important to keep them happy. There is no doubt that my children have benefited from some of the money that they have donated to the school.
However it is also certain that some of these bigger donors have used their financial influence to wield some control upon policy and that isn’t always a good thing. The fact that there are lots of zeros in your bank account is not indicative of your prowess or skill in the field of education. A fat wallet doesn’t mean that you know a thing about how to run a school or that you have a lick of common sense.
So we sometimes find that volunteer positions aren’t necessarily filled by those are most capable and best able to fulfill the responsibilities of the position. We find that money sometimes makes people behave in a manner that is reprehensible.
I don’t care if you have money. It doesn’t matter to me whether you have more less than I do. All I care about is who has the greatest ability to positively impact the school. End of story.
Yet I find myself arguing with idiots, buffoons and mean girls who are in a category all their own.
Private School Fundraisers
Private school fundraisers are a great example of the problems that certain elements can create. If you were to have a hypothetical auction you might reach out to various businesses and ask for donations of products/services that you could auction off to raise money for the school.
The smart school would reach out to businesses by presenting this as marketing opportunity. Don’t tell them that if they don’t provide a donation that the school won’t have a computer. Tell them that they are reaching a very affluent group of prospective consumers and that this group will be made aware of where the donation comes from.
When you do that they can view it as a business expense. You are helping them with the advertising/marketing efforts. That is something smart business people are interested in.
Alas some people are so provincial and so insecure they use that big bank account to prevent common sense from ruling the day. They tell you that they would never think of using eBay to run an online auction because they think it is trashy. Of course they haven’t ever used it nor does it make sense to them to expand the pool of prospective buyers from a few thousand into the millions.
Of course I don’t have any personal experience with this. I would never suggest that certain people gained their influence by lying down upon their backs because that would be too subtle. I would be far more graphic because making them sputter is much more fun.
And if I did any of these things for real people would suggest that I was angry merely because of sour grapes. Sigh, they just don’t understand that while I may be selfish in regard to my children my selfishness benefits their children too. Because the nifty thing about raising more money for the school is that it goes to all of the children and not just a privileged few.
Oh well, sometimes there really isn’t a relationship between your bank account and your IQ.