Educational reform and funding

This is not directly about technology or related subjects but something I feel strongly about. The education of our kids. Recently, pink slips were given to number of teachers in my daughters school district because funding was going to fall short. One of the major areas was the performing arts and specifically music. I grew up in band playing trombone with some of the best teachers around. Winning championships, marching in Rose Parades, World Series, countless band reviews and a tour of Australia. I can directly trace some of my understanding of logic and teamwork to my music and experiences.

I have two issues with the recent pink slip issuance. One is the idea that we cut programs entirely or reduce the money allocation. I look at the amounts that are allocated per student and wonder how even on the reduced amounts, there is not a way to make it work. The other issue is that less productive teachers with seniority are being kept while others who are clearly better teachers as acknowledged by their peers, students and parents, are given the slips.

I’m a fan of some of the models Bill Gates has presented about education. #WashingtonPostArticle# I believe as far as compensation, teachers are more like engineers wishing to have a guaranteed base with bonus potential rather than a truly variable commission structure. But I believe without incentives, most individuals will not rise to their best. For the sake of our kids and future, we need to figure this out.

1 million purchased

I was looking on LivingSocial today and remembered that I had forgotten to purchase the Fandango deal earlier this week. When I checked and saw 1 million had been purchased, equating to 2 million tickets, it occurred to me how powerful this is. That’s 9 million dollars going through the web site in one day. I’m not sure how many of the Amazon certificates they sold but I would guess that it was similar.

What does this tell me? Consumers are spending money. Deals are still driving sales for items that people want and use. And if there are many like me, then Living Social likely could have sold double what they did. With most movies lasting 90 minutes, thats 1.5 million hours spent in movie theaters. Not to mention the 6 dollar drinks and 5 dollar popcorn!