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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Diplomas and Gorditas

I found a story online today about schools in a Canada district that could have repercussions on their American counterparts.

Ottawa - Canadian students could soon be graduating from "Taco Bell High" or "Wal-Mart Public School" if trustees here go ahead with a scheme to sell school naming rights to corporations to raise extra funds.

That's right, they're following up with an idea that I proposed in my book, Learn Me Good, and here on my blog, about corporate sponsorship. Of course, I just touched the tip of the iceberg, suggesting that the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills be sponsored. But these guys are playing it out a little further, going so far as to suggest that entire campuses be named just like ballparks.

"No one wants to go to Taco Bell High," Ellen Dickson, chair of the Ottawa Carleton Assembly of School Councils, told the daily Ottawa Citizen.

See, I beg to differ. I can already see Sophomores walking around proudly displaying T-shirts that read, "Yo Quiero Taco Bell High School."

In the graduation programs, the tired old classifications of cum laude and summa cum laude will be replaced with Grande and Chalupa. And the me tell you, Chalupa status will most definitely help in students' attempts to get into fine universities such as Best Buy University or College of Kohls.

I'll be keeping my eye on the situation in Canada, because I'd love to hear exactly how much money a school district can make from Wal-Mart or Chick-Fil-A...


100 Farmers said...

I hereby nominate my school to be sponsored by Dairy Queen Blizzards. Imagine our fight song: Hmmm, we're tastylicious just not so nutricious. Watch it or we'll get vicious.

Mike in Texas said...

Then I claim my school to be sponsored by Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Blizzards.

ancient clown said...


I've always said; "The education process is a failure because they don't teach us how to learn but rather what to know, subsequently since what we know is always changing, we keep falling behind."
"Wisdom is not the 'Accumulation of Knowledge', rather it is the proper 'Application of Knowledge'."
your humble servant,
ancient clown

Scott S. Floyd said...

In small town Texas (Class 3A), we would have to be Sonic High. We could always be the Fighting Foot Longers or something like that. Just saying.

Anonymous said...

My school would probably be sponsored by Ace Check Cashing or EZ Pawn.

Unknown said...

Universities have been doing this for years. Indiana University's music school is one of the four best in the nation. The Jacobs family gave the music school 40 million dollars, so it's now the Jacobs School of Music. Better that schools get a clue and stop being dependent on state funding.

Mister Teacher said...

C, I think that family endowments are very different than corporate sponsorship...

And I gotta say, I would have loved to have gone to Heinz High...

The Tour Marm said...

However, if these corporately sponsored schools go the way of the sports stadiums, they might be changing their names every few years:

I graduated from MCI school in 2003

Oh, when I graduated it was called, Verizon.

My school was PSI, now it's empty, I mean M&T.

Corporate names are not forever.

Perhaps it would be better to keep traditional names and have something that indicates the sponsorship:

Wilfred Laurier High School
A Molson-supported school

Unknown said...

"C, I think that family endowments are very different than corporate sponsorship"

How? There are corporate sponsored (endowed) professorships, campus buildings built by corporate donations with the corporation's name on them, corporate sponsored case competitions in courses, the list goes on and on. And the hand wringers screamed doom and gloom that, of course, never happened. This is a non-issue. People have been squealing about this for years, and not one of their hysterical predictions has come true.

"what we know is always changing"

No, it doesn't change. 2+2 is still 4 and always will be. Shakespeare is Shakespeare. Though I'll give you credit for naming yourself appropriately, clown.

Mister Teacher said...

Yes, there are sponsored buildings, professorships, etc. but people are still going to Oklahoma University NOT T. Boone Pickens University...

Anonymous said...

Imagine the uncomfortable interviews the poor graduates of Viagra Vo-Tech will have someday.