Most of the time I post about meaningless fluff and superficialness but today I feel I need to vent if you will about something that I find so frustrating.
I am lucky to be living in the area that I do. I live within the boundaries of a school that serves more of the affluent members of our fine city. Although this school is older and smaller than the ones I grew up in, it is clean, we have wonderful teachers and great opportunities for the kids to spread their wings. This last winter, they intaduced a new ski / snowboarding program for Grades 1 and 2 (Grades 3 through 6 have been doing it for a while). Although I was a little scared of sending my baby down a hill with nothing but a helmet and wrist guards, I thought it was a great opportunity. I paid the $129 and sent my young one of on a bus to experience gravity at its finest. If we couldn't afford it the school would pay for it.
A few months later I was at a baby shower where they were discussing the state of some of the schools in our city. Some of the ladies were student teachers and were telling us what it was like on the inside. This one girl was talking about a school in the NE (I don't know which) were they don't even have enough funding to supply themselves with paper or pencils for all of the kids. Luckily this year a company that she was working for to put herself through school, sponsored the school she was student teaching at. The company bought them all of the paper they needed and other school supplies. She said she was concerned about what the school would do next year when her company chooses another school to sponsor (spread the wealth I guess) its not the like the parents in that community can do it.
Fast forwars to 3 weeks ago. My school (the one my son goes too) was having a milestone birthday party. Because of the party, they suddenly received thousands of dollars in extra funding to give the grounds and insides a bit of a face lift. Yes the new awards shelf looks lovely (much better than the old yet satisfactory one) and the grounds are better for maitennace (less watering, and mud tracking due to mulching and rock beds) but I can't help but wonder if that money could have been better spent. My son gets to go snow boarding for a week while others kids, not too far away are lucky if the have a pencil and a piece of paper to practice their printing and spelling.
Now I wouldn't be so upset if my school was a private school with private funding, but it is not. As I understood it the school gets a certain amount of money for each child they have on record by the end of September (an idea that I don't fully agree with) so why does my school get all of this "extra funding"? Of course I am assuming enrollments are about the same, but I think they are higher in the poorer school. I also understand that parents in our community can afford to buy their children the supplies they need, were that isn't the case for the other school. Yet how can their be such a difference.
When my son was younger the philosophy was to shop around for the school you wanted your child to go to, but throught school closers and consolidating enrolments are high for the capacity of the school. D's teacher said they won't be able to take any children out of the school boundaries for next year. She even said that included the children already attending who live out of bounds. There are at least 3 or 4 kids in D's class that this will affect. That sucks!
I wish there was something I could do. Some way to give more balance. This is our kids' futures I am talking about. Its really important, yet I don't know what to do or where to start. I wish I had more ideas. I wish I knew influential people who wouldn't mind parting with some money for the sake of our children's and countries future. But who am I? A stay at home mom who knows no one and although is extremely frustrated, is still grateful she lives where she does, because if it was somewhere else I think I would be more frustrated.