Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Signature Required

I heard an interesting tidbit on the Richmond news this morning.  Chesterfield County Schools wants to administer a new drug/alcohol use survey to its students.  Permission slips have been sent home.  Parents who sign and return them will be entered in a lottery for $500.  

So now we have to bribe parents to do the simplest things.  Why, oh why, can’t parents be responsible?  If your child brings something home that requires your attention, read it and send it back in.  Schools shouldn’t have to waste time and money on such rewards.  From personal experience I know how awfully hard it is to get some parents to send stuff like that back to school.  Even getting report cards signed and returned is like pulling teeth.  The time I use to waste trying to phone parents (some without phones) and find out if they saw the report card.  Those same parents are the ones at the end of the year who say, “You can’t fail Johnny!  You never told me he was doing badly!”  

Requiring signatures shouldn’t be necessary anyway.  Parents should know when report cards come out, and expect their child to bring one home.  If it gets “lost” on the way, then it’s the parent’s responsibility to contact the school.

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