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!!