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Now, the schools can’t even have a cake stall to help educate the kiddies.

James-T-Kirk 31 October 2006 39

On an education related note, today, I discovered that an inner north High School was unable to teach kiddies in the fine art of baking a cake, as they are out of funds!! In fact the coffers have been dry since week 1 of term..

So, instead of teaching home science using practical skills, the dedicated teaching staff (Who are putting up with more localised pissing contests that the rest of the department [i.e. between year 8 boys]) have to put up with the abuse that follows the discovery (yet again) that more than half of the little kiddies have failed to pay their voluntary contributions, so they can’t afford to purchase ingredients….. So, the slack teachers simply bring out another couple of word searches, while the dedicated ones actually plan a meaningfull theory lesson, full of discovery and education… Meanwhile, the year 8 boys start to get restless… Leading to Level 1,2,and 3 contracts, and if the teachers are lucky, SUSPENSION!!! Yay – the lack of funds to purchase flour and eggs actually contributes to childhood delinquency – And possible later jail terms.

Good thing we are building a tree farm (Arboureteum) – and an ACT Prison.

Kind of makes you wonder why the contributions are voluntary…

Anybody want to cause a *really fun* stir?

Simply follow the steps below;

1) Ring the media, and arrange for there to be camera crews (It works best when the pollies are publically shamed)
2) Go to wollies, and purchase 2 dozen eggs, 10kg flour, 1 packet of cocoa, and 4 l of milk.
3) With the media there, make a *very public* donation or your approximately $30 of ingredients, to allow the at least one class of poor kidies to learn to cook.
4) Get a tax deductable receipt from the school.
5) Sit back and watch the news that night.

At least that will bring to the attention of the average member of the public (Who’s world exists between episodes of Home and Away or Neigbours) the plight of these kids who will never learn anything better that being able to purchase a burger at the Golden Arches…. That is as longs as their maths skills are good enough to count their change.

I would love to help, but any adverse publicity will affect my partner who is one of the teachers who could be bothered to create meaningfull lessons at the school.

And, keep in mind that the contribution is less than $30 per semester. If we don’t spend $10 million on a tree farm, that equates to voluntary contributions for every child in the education system for a significant number of years. – Gosh if that was invested, then they may never have to pay a voluntary contribution again.

In reflection, this is why I pay to send my kids to a private school – Their education is not held ransom by the kids in the class who don’t care (So they don’t bother to remind their parents about outstanding fees.) I pay for the computers, and the flour and the eggs. I suspect that that is the actual reason why parents are leaving the public system in droves.

It may cost a little extra, but I can salary sacrifice it. I suspect that you can as well.

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39 Responses to Now, the schools can’t even have a cake stall to help educate the kiddies.
VYBerlinaV8 VYBerlinaV8 9:00 am 31 Oct 06

Could DJ McLaughlin make a cake I wonder? Perhaps the police could have whipped him up a nice butter cake, then they wouldn’t be completely responsible for his death.

justbands justbands 9:10 am 31 Oct 06

Payment (or lack of payment) of vuluntary contributions was a factor in where we sent our son to school. There was no need to resort to an expensive (& quite often no better) private school though…we just chose wisely & he goes to an excellent public school with a percentage of vuluntary payments made in the high 90s.

Swaggie Swaggie 9:25 am 31 Oct 06

Unless you’re of the catholic persuasion it seems that private schooling in this town is a little restricted. Meanwhile we’ve done out bit for our SOS submission, we attend the P&C, we pay the voluntary contribs and support the teachers in their actions (strikes excepted) hoping the few ferals in the year don’t bring the rest of the kids down to their level. I’m afraid if the Teachers Union smelt extra funds in the kitty (through cancellation of the Stanhope Memorial Arboretum for example) they’d simply get more greedy with their pay demands.

James-T-Kirk James-T-Kirk 9:33 am 31 Oct 06

Justbands – How do you get a report from the school on the level of compliance of these voluntary contributions? I would have thought that the schools would have been required to keep that data close to their chests, so as to not adversely affect enrolements.

I sure as hell wouldn’t send my kid to a school where there was a high level of non-compliance.

justbands justbands 9:33 am 31 Oct 06

I hardly think teachers are “greedy”, they ask for fair pay in my opinion & seldom get it.

Agreed on the Catholic thing though, a large factor in why I dislike private schools.

justbands justbands 9:36 am 31 Oct 06

James-T-Kirk….talk to the schools, the parents & the teachers, you’ll find out. Hardly rocket science sometimes either. Meaning no disrespect to its residents, but it’s not difficult to work out that a school like Kambah Primary would have a much lower level of contributions than say Chapman Primary.

nyssa76 nyssa76 9:36 am 31 Oct 06

I’ve paid for resources for my students. Even this year.

I shouldn’t have to but I do it so they can ALL learn.

JTK, name the school….or can I guess….

bonfire bonfire 9:36 am 31 Oct 06

i think a teacher in a govt school sending their kid to a private school speaks volumes about the quality of public education in the act.

James-T-Kirk James-T-Kirk 9:41 am 31 Oct 06

Nyssa – Sorry, I can’t name the school, as to do so, would implicate my partner. I Can confirm that it is in he North, not in the sadly poverty-striken Kambah area.

Kerces Kerces 9:41 am 31 Oct 06

If someone would like to follow James-T-Kirk’s instructions above (next week preferably) I would be happy to photograph it for RA. Drop me a line at

Special G Special G 9:43 am 31 Oct 06

Did they not budget the class money correctly? I am not sure what it is in high schools although Primary classes get $400/year to pay for those things, as well as any other resources the class may need. IEC classes get $200. Its amazing how far most teachers can stretch this tiny amount of money. The Arboureteum consultant scratches his arse and gets paid that much.

How big a cake are you baking JTK?

nyssa76 nyssa76 9:45 am 31 Oct 06

JTK, is it in the “inner north” i.e. Dickson or closer to Kaleen?

Previous personal communication re: Kaleen indicates that it is also struggling.

Kerces I’d love to. I’ll check my timetable and see what I can do 🙂

bonfire, I work in a non-govt school and my children attend a govt school. Guess your wrong.

nyssa76 nyssa76 9:50 am 31 Oct 06

Hell I’ll even stay to help them cook it (if I have time) I taught Food Studies this year.

VYBerlinaV8 VYBerlinaV8 9:50 am 31 Oct 06

Despite having many other wild and socially unacceptable views, I actually think that teachers (and nurses, and cops) are waaaaay underpaid. We should be making these careers aspirational for bright youngsters, and pay them accordingly. Sheeesh, these are our kids, people! I am also for performance based pay (but that is a separate issue).

Thumper Thumper 10:01 am 31 Oct 06

“Despite having many other wild and socially unacceptable views”

Nah, come on….

You can’t be serious?

RandomGit RandomGit 11:55 am 31 Oct 06

bonfire, guilty as charged

nyssa, I’m happy for you that you scored one of the few good ones.

James-T-Kirk James-T-Kirk 3:08 pm 31 Oct 06

Shall we do a ring around and identify the schools in the north Canberra / Belconnen / Gungahlin area that have run out of funds? Then we could choose one school, grab $10 from 10 people ($100 in total), and do a public donation on mass.

Possibly, we may get the education minister there to accept the funds.

Win news certainly would love it!

Thumper Thumper 3:54 pm 31 Oct 06

I’ll put my hand up for tenner….

RandomGit RandomGit 4:09 pm 31 Oct 06

Yup, ten wee bucks ain’t no thang!

bubzie bubzie 5:15 pm 31 Oct 06

I think at the end of last year, my cooking teacher had to buy stuff for us out of her own money, because out of our class of about 15, about 5 of us (including myself) had paid our voluntary contributions. (but then, we’re a pov-stricken school, lol)

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