I don’t even know where to begin, but I’ll start by recapping. In case you haven’t heard this or read it yet, two Georgia schools are testing out a privately-funded program in which they are offering to pay under-performing students to attend study hall. Seriously! The thinking, supposedly, is that parents of means have been paying their kids for good grades for a long time, but poor parents simply have to tell their kids to study and learn for the sake of learning.
Again, my thoughts are all over the place on this one. And every way I look at it, it’s a bad idea. It sends the wrong message. It continues a trend of making kids think they are “entitled” somehow. So say this works for a few kids and they improve their grades (which I agree is a good end result), and they go on to attend Jr. College or a 4-yr university. What then? Do we assume they will just automatically start studying for its own benefit, or will they be looking for the next hand out?
The program is intended to encourage some underprivelaged kids to study versus taking a part-time job for extra money. Hey here’s an idea, study AND work if you need the money. Though I never did personally, I knew lots of people in high school and college who worked part-time jobs and had to study too. In fact in college I knew many kids who HAD to work several jobs just to pay for school, and then had to find time to study so they didn’t fail out.
Somehow, some way, this seems to link back to the whole “No Child Left Behind” fiasco. Paying kids to motivate them to learn so that the school will ultimately benefit with more funding, and teachers will benefit with raises (things they should be getting anyway!).
And in my opinion, as always, is that ultimately it should be the PARENTS responsibility to motivate their kids to study and learn. The PARENTS should be enforcing study time and the value of good grades, whether money is involved or not. Period. If PARENTS can’t afford to give their kids money for grades, then it’s up to THEM to figure out different ways to motivate their kids. That’s what PARENTS are supposed to do.
Of course that’s just my opinion. I could be wrong.
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