Wednesday, June 09, 2010

The Hurt (your wallet) Locker

Let me just quote Son #3:

"Gym lockers are mandatory. I never used mine. And I did not know, when they assigned me the locker, that there was a $3 fee for it. If I don't pay the fee, they won't let me graduate. I had to pay for a regular locker, too. $5. And I shouldn't have had to pay for that, either, because I never used it, never wanted it, but it's mandatory. It's not a lot of money, but still. It's like when you're at a stop light and some hobo 'washes' your windshield with dirty water, and expects you to pay him. Of course, there's nothing wrong with NOT paying the hobo, but if you don't pay the government, they won't let you graduate."

Excellent analogy, my son who was just informed he has been selected for a program for students with the potential to be high academic achievers.

And on a totally unrelated note (or absolutely connected, depending on your perspective), yesterday I had to proofread an article about negotiations between the school board and the teacher's union of a nearby public school system.

The union rep insisted that the schools would never be able to hire enough summer school teachers, if they did not raise the pay rate by $4/hour. The rate the school system is currently offering summer school teachers is, according to the union rep, "not even what they pay a first-year teacher."

What is this pittance they expect teachers to accept in exchange for their services on a summer morning? This ridiculously low amount no teacher in a sane frame of mind would stoop to accept?


No, that is not a typo.



Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

I don't really understand how they could have an hourly rate for teachers. I mean, I guess I would assume that if teachers are paid a high hourly rate, that would be for their contract hours and not include all the extra time they put in at home and after school and before school...

But what I really don't understand is

1) when did kids start having to pay for lockers?!?!?!


2) Why is everyone all of the sudden calling street people and other homeless people "hobos"? I seriously thought that the word hobos was reserved for a special type of homeless person who traveled on the railroads. If "hobo" ends up getting used for just any old homeless person, how will the romantic railroad traveling homeless person be able to distinguish him or herself?!?!?!?! This is terrible! This is almost as bad as when they started saying that stuff out of mixes is "homemade", just because you bake the mix in your own oven!!!!!!!!!

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Oh and forgot to even say how much I hate it when the people try & clean the windshield. I'd way rather just give them money for nothing. I really, really hate that. It's worse than even if I had to go back in time and pay for my high school locker.

Christine said...

Jill-I don't know where he came up with that figure, either. And I have no idea when kids started having to pay for lockers :) And I am not sure anyone other than Sons #2 and 3 are calling homeless people hobos. They love that word, though, and occasionally threaten to ride the rails, themselves. And, finally, yes, I am very much in favor of leaving my windshield alone.

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

Oh no, I've heard a lot of kids use the term "hobo"! That's the weird thing! One night when we went downtown late at night my own DAUGHTER said she was afraid of the "hobos"!

And I was all like, "Don't be ridiculous! Hobos ride the rails! These are plain old fashioned crack heads and there's no reason to be afraid!" Seriously, I'm worried that maybe it's a thing now and I'm worried about the actual, real hobos self esteem!

(I'm kidding!!!!!!! But I do actually feel a little bit bad for authentic hobos. :-)

Sue said...

If this is a public school (and I can't remember what if you've said so or not), I would FIGHT the locker fee. Why? Because education is supposed to be promised to every child for FREE, a law by the government. Forcing a child to pay to graduate (essentially, this is what it comes to, right?) is illegal, plain and simple. I would tell them that and let them try to tell your son he can't graduate, THEN I would go public with it if they insisted.

I want to be a summer school teacher!!!

#3 said...

Trust me, Skywood, I know the difference between a hobo and a bum, a tramp and crackhead I just love to use the word "hobo". Also, unfortunately we no longer have many true hobos left. Now homeless people prefer to collect welfare rather than hop on a train to look for work. If the true hobo returns I will make sure to use proper terminology.

ALF said...

They have to pay for lockers? That doesn't even make any sense.

Anonymous said...

I hate unions.

Jill/Twipply Skwood said...

#3 - Yeah, I thought that too. But I saw on TV one time that there are hobo conventions where hobos get together and celebrate their...togetherness...or hoboness...or authenticity..or maybe even differentiating themselves from crackheads, who knows?!?!?!?

I'm happy to hear that it's not a thing. I'm sure authentic hobos feel much better now that their word isn't going to be usurped and go the way of "homemade" (actually I think I've even seen "from scratch" on some boxed products...) I know *I'M* relieved, at any rate. :-) :-) :-)