If you haven’t been living under a rock lately, you know public schools are failing. And how do you know? Well, you know because “they” said so. And would “they” ever lie to you? “They” wouldn’t dare. Would they?
You also know “they” say the best way to fix public schools is to let businesses take them over. Yes, for a profit, but really for the children. Everything’s always for the children. I mean, if you’re gonna stuff your pockets with ill-advised Americans’ hard earned cash under the guise of education reform, best to do it for the kids, amiright?!?!
If we could just get some more billionaire-backed online schools and academies in cahoots with profit-driven standardized testing companies to take over education, we’d be fixed. We’d be China. Or Korea. Or Europe. Or whatever countries outperform us because they either don’t really or because they track their students and invest money in education and force children to go to study school after regular school and we don’t, thereby making comparing our students to theirs like comparing pussy cats to sharks.
If we could just do that, we’d be set.
Good news is, we are doing just that. In Michigan alone, we’ve got poverty-stricken schools closing and privatized, “public” charter schools and online academies opening up. We’ve got talented, experienced, multiple-degree-holding educators losing their jobs and inexperienced, lesser educated teachers willing to work for far less taking over.
If that’s not a recipe for better learnin’, I don’t know what is.
But, you see, I’ve been thinking. Why stop there? Why not take this corporatization of public education to the next level? I mean, shit, there’s money to be made, baby, and time spent thinking about exploiting our kids further is time wasted, no? We gots to get on that exploitation train while the getting’s still good, people.
So here it is: 5 ways we can make more money off schools through corporatization.
Commercialize the classroom.
This one’s a no-brainer. See, all school districts have to do is require teachers to place approved advertisements from corporations interested in making a buck off the failing public schools line all over their classrooms.
Students walk up to a classroom which is no longer room 123 World History with Mrs. Jones, but rather Koch Industries’ World History. And then when they walk in the door, they get to sit in a desk, each one sponsored by a child company — you know, like Brawny paper towels and Stainmaster carpet. And all around them — on bulletin boards and handouts — is one slogan after another, begging them to try this product and convincing them they can’t live without that one.
Imagine the spike in profits!
Require students to seek corporate sponsorship.
This works in the world of racing, for example. Why not in education? See, all students have to do to attend is simply secure an approved corporate sponsorship. That’s it. Yes, they also have to wear clothing and accessories advertising their sponsor each day and introduce themselves to their teachers and classmates before speaking by saying things like, “Hi, I’m Johnny Smith, sponsored by Quilted Northern toilet paper, softest brand on the bum hole around,” but so what? It builds character. Or something.
Replace bells with corporate jingles.
Who needs bells when you can move kids from place to place with catchy commercials like this?
Add an Advanced Placement Consumers class.
A four-year requirement (I know. WOW! Four years of AP? You betcha!), this AP Consumers class won’t be anything like the consumers psychology courses you heard about in college. Instead of teaching students to study consumer behavior and what motivates buyers, it will teach students how to behave like and motivate themselves to be good little consumers. It will feature the child companies of fat cat corporations interested in profiting off public education and will instill in students an unhealthy obsession with material goods.
Can’t you just hear the jangling of all the change that’ll bring in?
Make door-to-door sales mandatory volunteer hours.
What better way to teach responsibility to oneself and one’s community than requiring students to volunteer? And what better way to line one’s pockets than requiring students to sell approved commercial goods door-to-door to fulfill that mandate? Family and neighbors are suckers for school fundraisers. Just think of the skyrocketing quarterly figures when they learn students are volunteering their time to sell these products with no benefit to themselves except the pipe dream of getting a quality education from greedy profiteers.
Add these to their already thievish plans, and these politicians and businessmen will be burning benjamins in no time, boy.