Monday, February 17, 2014

"Educational" Workshops on the Strip

The Kagan Educational Workshop was to be held in Las Vegas, Nevada this year as opposed to Henderson, Nevada.   Mr. Bassett (Core Curriculum Director for Millard School District) and Mr. Bassett (Delta High Math teacher) both signed up to attend this educational workshop. Educational it was for Max, Ava, Isaac and myself.  Here are some notes from the 'educational workshop' I attended:

Isaac:  "Grandma, look at the games! I want to play those games. Grandma, only daddy's can play those games.  I want to play those games!"

Ava:  "Grandma, did you see that lady dancing on the table?  You could see her butt cheeks!!!"

Max:  "Now I know why Grandma calls this place 'Sin City'.   People don't dress very modestly here do they?"

What I learned of most significance at my educational workshop? 

A game of Pollyanna with grandchildren highly trumps Casino games!

Butt cheeks on my little grand babies are such cuter butt cheeks than those of adult women dancing on tables!

Modest clothing adds much more to the beauty of a woman than the 'bare all' attitude of the world.

Thanks to my little presenters for educating me on what is truly important!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Blame Game

Utah made National News last week.  

"Uintah Elementary School in Salt Lake City, where up to 40 students were served lunch Tuesday — only to have it discarded. They were told they didn't have enough credit on their accounts."

Obviously, one hopping mad mother contacted the local news with her side of the that spoke of disgust and humiliation and claimed the parent had no clue they owed money.  She looked pretty calm and happy to appear on television.  Something I would not be happy or calm about.  I hate cameras.  Of course, she was younger, thinner and prettier than someone I know.

Some comments from news sources followed by some comments from this news

"Two state senators are paying a visit to an elementary school in Salt Lake City on Thursday,"  

Where have these senators been?  Why haven't they visited schools before to check out the amount of food that goes to waste in the school system (paid for in part by the taxpayer.)  Why haven't they visited the schools with the ridiculous amount of testing that goes on.  All in the very pleasing name of "No Child Left Behind."  Some of these children are left behind way before they enter the school system!  Where are they when a student takes their life?  I suppose they choose this moment to show up why... simply put because it made National News and what a great time for politics to come into play.  Gotta look out for number one if you are earning an income in the world of politics.

"No child in Utah should ever be hungry in a classroom," state Sens. Jim Dabakis and Todd Weiler said in a joint statement . "The most basic component of learning is a full stomach."

These children were not left starving.  They were given a snack of fruit and milk.  Like I said before I hope these two men checked out the garbage as they left the school to see the waste.  I have seen children who obviously would rather go hungry than eat what is placed before them.  Especially if they are use to a diet of junk food and that food is not offered in the cafeteria.

Yes, this school district most likely should have handled the situation in a different manner and yes, I bet they do after this fiasco!  But here are some facts I know both from being a parent and working in a school system (even in a lunch program for some time.)

Fact #1:
At registration parents are given a handbook.  This handbook states the cost of lunches per day, per month, per year depending on which program the family  qualifies for.  We suggest monthly payments be made at the beginning of each month with one being paid at registration.  Scott and I knew it was our responsibility to feed our children and our responsibility to make sure said payment was made on time.  Three of four said children were responsible enough that we could  send the check with them to deliver to the office.  One said child...well let's just say we learned it was easier to mail it to DHS then receive a phone call from Jane.

Fact #2:
Letters are sent home reminding parents of their past due accounts.  Sometimes not just one, not just two but perhaps three.  We also make phone calls if necessary.  And sometimes the letter is actually sent in the mail about money owed.

"Jason Olsen, a Salt Lake City District spokesman, said school officials told the district that their staffers typically tell students about any balances as they go through the lunch line and send home notifications to parents each week"

That is pretty much a standard policy.  I am pretty certain these parents had had a heads up about owing money on lunch accounts.

Bottom Line:
The sins of the parents were unfortunately answered on the heads of the children.  I see that happen way too often. It was interesting and fascinating to me to watch all the blame be placed on the school, the school district, the lunchroom manager, the lunch program.  Never once did I see it put where it truly belonged.  On the parents.  Parents know if their child qualifies for free, reduced or full pay at the beginning of the school year.  Parents know the exact cost of the lunch program. Parents know when the money is due.  No excuses parents, get it done.