I’m re-posting this great article on Board of Education Commisioner Rachel Norton’s blog. It’s entitled “How Kohl’s Cares makes sellouts of us all“. In it Ms. Norton talks about how corporations play off community concern for school funding; offering monetary give-aways in to schools that have the most people who clicking “like” on the Kohl’s Cares Facebook page.
Selling Out for our Schools: Here’s a quote
How Kohl’s Cares makes sellouts of us all
Maybe you’ve seen the TV commercials, or gotten a plaintive plea from a public school parent you know: Kohl’s is giving away $500,000 to each of the 20 schools that get the most votes! Vote for your school today! When a friend of mine asked me to vote for her kids’ school, of course I went right to Facebook to comply. Easy, right?
All you have to do is click. But I was pretty turned off when I saw that I had to provide the Kohl’s Cares Facebook application with my right arm, my firstborn child and a few golden coins in order to vote. read more…
I grew up in CA and remember that before Prop 13 schools didn’t have to do back flips (or collect box-tops) for the basic resources they needed to provide quality programs. I remember full-time school nurses and librarians, and counselors with manageable student ratios. I remember taking summer school classes for enrichment and … fun! Unfortunately, begging for resources seems now seems to be the norm.
Selling Out for our Schools: Pecking the Button
Norton’s article made me think of the psychological experiments I read about in college where chickens were given a food pellet as a reward for pecking at a button. Scientists found that after the chickens learned the button pecking behavior, they could give food less and less often, because the chickens kept pecking to get the intermittent reward.
Thanks, Rachel, for reminding us than pecking, or clicking in this case, for small rewards isn’t going to get us anywhere. We need to focus our time on creating a real solutions for funding our schools. Fixing prop 13 would be a great step in that direction.