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Sunday, September 21, 2008

Just a few ideas

If you don't live in the Dallas area, perhaps you haven't heard, but the school district has mistakenly overspent and underbudgeted to the tune of roughly $64 million dollar. Yes, a number that is higher than third graders are required to have knowledge of, according to the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills.

At any rate, there has been a lot of pulling of hair and gnashing of teeth over what this shortfall might bring -- layoffs, severe program cuts, class by candlelight -- but I am not here to add more worry to the situation. Instead, I like to go by Stallone's credo -- if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the disease (ok, maybe that's not the context or the quote) -- and heaven forbid I be part of the disease.

So I've been thinking about how we can get this $64 million back without anyone losing their jobs, and I've come up with a few ideas. See what you think.

1) Pass the hat around -- the simplest solution of all. We pass around the hat, everybody at each school throws in a couple of bucks. . . In no time at all, we'd have that $64 million knocked down to $63.8 million.

2) Charity auction of teachers/staff -- I've never personally taken part in or been to a charity auction, but they always seem to work on tv shows and movies. A teacher stands up on the stage, and the bidding begins. The high bidder gets to take the teacher/administrator/superintendent home for a day to be their personal servant. I imagine I would go for roughly $23.50, and I would be willing to walk a kid's dog, clean their room, and file their PlayStation games alphabetically for that, all in the name of helping out the district.

3) Concessions -- Let's start selling Cokes during class for $2 and popcorn for $4.50. Sure, there might be more spills and stained tests, but think of the profit we could make!!!

4) Talent show out behind the barn!! -- this sort of thing ALWAYS worked on Little House on the Prairie, so why the heck wouldn't it work here? Just think about all the untapped talent that the teachers and staff of DISD have. We could charge $10 a ticket, and I'm sure people would come from milles around to be amazed by the big show.

5) Corporate Sponsorship -- I've been pushing this for years now. We get some major companies to back us, and we place their names on certain things around the school district. "Kids, please take out your Visa spelling list, sponsored by Kellog's." "Your math quiz today is brought to you by IBM, proud sponsor of a new generation of scholars." The kids already have a dress code. Slap a Nike swoosh on the breast of each dress shirt, and we cut that shortfall in half immediately.

Any thoughts? These ideas have legs, people! Let's get it done!!


educat said...

We're in a similar situation in Oklahoma. I've offered a solution, nay, THE solution, but no one listens to me. I guess a prophet is never known in her hometown. So now I'll give it to you.


Grease from the school cafeteria goes directly to the district Science classrooms where it is treated and fuels the transportation system.

Granted, I've only shared this idea a couple of hours into happy hour so the suggestion is then followed by "Yeah! And we can totally cook meth too!".

Melissa said...

Ok, I loved the corporate sponsorship of spelling tests ideas until I read the comment above. Biodiesel? Genius.
I mean, your ideas are genius, too. I'm just sayin'.

Edna Lee said...

Has anyone considered renting out our classrooms in the evening?

I only suggest this because when I leave work late, there are literally gangs of young men and ladies gathered on street corners and alleyways along our downtown streets. They must members of various clubs of some sort. I can only imagine how difficult it must be for them to conduct meetings of any value in such squalled conditions. I see their frustration as members wander up to each other only to shake hands quickly and then part ways. That's no way to build lasting relationships!

It's quite possible they would jump at the chance to conduct their meetings in the comfort and security of a classroom if the price was right. We could even offer the use of computers and phone service, for a nominal fee, so that they can network with each other and recruit others to join their clubs.


kherbert said...

I don't know a solution but your probably going to get a bunch of Gulf Coast kids up there now. We are restarting school today, but we have several districts that were pretty much wiped out - entire towns gone.

Anonymous said...

I, personally, like to be part of the problem. I get listened to more that way. :-)

You're right. Mr. T, the solution is going to come out of your paycheck, one way or another.

Anonymous said...

I say you get Jerry Jones to be the CFO of Dallas ISD. He seems to attract money in spite of what he has to sell.

Anonymous said...

The DISD Financial Wizards could look into selling the mineral rights to all their properties, then allow strip mining or drilling.


Hot Tub Lizzy said...

I'm all for #5!!! If they can do football stadiums, I'd Happily Go to M&M High School..... and park in Pillsbury Parking Lot....

Lady Weasel said...

Oooo! Oooo! I know! I know!

~raises arm high, supporting it with the other arm by the elbow~

Central administration can have a cake walk!

educat said...

Or, you know how in "Idiocracy", the Secretary of State gets money when he says "Sponsored by Carl's Jr"?

You could do that. "Everyone open your math books, sponsored by Carl's Jr, to page 32".

Mister Teacher said...

Great ideas! Yes, I had envisioned the school getting a dollar every time we said something like, "Here's your homework, brought to you by Ford, where Quality is job 1. Education is job 15."

HappyChyck said...

Our state officials can't do higher math either (apparently like our high school students who can't pass their proficiencies) so we are in dire straits this year. I appreciate your ideas, and in fact the woman who runs the student store has already approached admin about doing an American Idol kind of competition for the kids. Hello! That's the talent show idea! LOL! But what the store lady doesn't know is that she could probably raise more money setting up a karaoke night for the teachers. See, she doesn't go to staff parties. The teachers at my school love karaoke. (Usually served with vast amounts of alcohol, but we might be able to work something out!)

How 'bout a raffle? Oh! Or one of those events where you buy cream pies to throw at...well whoever is the most despised person in the district right now. People will pay a lot of money to throw pies at important people they don't like.

Mister Teacher said...

it won't raise any money, but I'm considering throwing cream pies at a few people...

Lady Weasel said...

As a fine product of DISD, myself; I vote a combination field day, cake walk, farm day and carnival. Everybody from central administration can be any of the following:

1. Clowns - They do a pretty good job at that, already.

2. Farm Animals - 'Bout time they earned their keep.

3. Record Player DJ - 'Round and round the record spins. No one gets cake. Nobody wins.

4. 100 Yard Dash - It'll be great! We'd race 'em like greyhounds. But, instead of using a mechanical rabbit as bait, we could use cash on a string! The finish line would, of course, be made of red tape.

5. Greased Pole Climbing - Watch them scratch and claw their way to the top.

6. Dunking Booth - Make them take a bath in their own filth, over and over and over!

As you can see, I have a lot of pent up aggression. But, since my mother is one of those who's job is in jeopardy because of these schmucks, I can go on all day about this.

Joel said...

If school districts would abolish that silly little "no hats" rule, they could go with individual corporate sponsorships, much like NASCAR or PGA.

While we're at that, why not make congressmen do the same thing so we really know who is buying their votes!