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#1 of 71 Old 01-30-2011, 07:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We're homeschooling the two oldest of our four children. We're moving to an area with a wonderful parochial school soon and are thinking of sending the kids there. I like the school except for a few things. The big one is the mandatory volunteering. Not only is it an oxymoron but I'm not sure how I'll be able to find the time for it. 

 

The required hours are 40 per child. So with two kids there it's 80 hours over the course of the school year, about 2 hours each week. The hours must be completed during the school day and in the school building (they don't make it clear why). Younger children are, under no circumstances, allowed to accompany the parent. It must be the parent volunteering, no one else is allowed in their place. You must pass a background check, at your own expense, to be allowed to volunteer. If you do not complete your hours you must pay $10 per hour for each hour you did not do.

 

I'm at a loss on this. It's a really expensive school - $11,000. With the two younger kids and not knowing anyone in the area I don't know how to complete the hours. My husband will be deployed for much of next school year and when he's home will be working during school hours. I'm wondering if just paying the 'fine' would be easier and cheaper since a babysitter will likely run $10 an hour but I don't want to be the parent who didn't volunteer. It just irritates me to think about paying $800 because I didn't volunteer. Isn't volunteering a voluntary thing?

 

If all this wasn't bad I talked to a parent whose kids went to this school last year and she said her volunteer time was spent sitting next to a phone waiting for it to ring, cutting out shapes that their kids said were never used, re-dusting trophies, and being a 'bathroom attendant' (keeping the bathrooms clean and making sure the kids wash their hands and flush). I'd like to help but this sounds like a waste of time and just busy work.

 

I'm not sure if I should try to fight it or just go with it. 

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#2 of 71 Old 01-30-2011, 07:45 PM
 
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I don't think you should fight it in an aggressive sense, but I do think you should see if they can make some sort of exception because your husband will be deployed or see if you can bring the younger kids with you since you will have no one to watch them.  Sometimes people will make exceptions for military families that they wouldn't normally make.

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#3 of 71 Old 01-30-2011, 09:52 PM
 
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I would think they would at least let you do your volunteer hours at home at the very least. Why can't you cut-out paper shapes there? The work still gets done! I'd find out if working special events count. If you do 4 hours at the carnival, does that count? At least blocks of time would be easier than little bits every week.

 

Personally, I'd just do what you can and pay the difference end of the year if you have too. That way you had some presence at the school but don't have to stress so much about fulfilling every minute.

 

It's sort of crazy for then to think a mom who will be on her own most of the year with little ones will be able to sit in the office 2 hours a week.


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#4 of 71 Old 01-30-2011, 10:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't think you should fight it in an aggressive sense, but I do think you should see if they can make some sort of exception because your husband will be deployed or see if you can bring the younger kids with you since you will have no one to watch them.  Sometimes people will make exceptions for military families that they wouldn't normally make.


 

The mom I talked to said they don't make exceptions for military families. The school is right near the base and roughly 1/4 of the families are military. They don't allow young children to be there with the parent because they feel it is too distracting, which I can understand. I'm not even sure how much help I could be holding an infant and chasing a toddler. 


 

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I would think they would at least let you do your volunteer hours at home at the very least. Why can't you cut-out paper shapes there? The work still gets done! I'd find out if working special events count. If you do 4 hours at the carnival, does that count? At least blocks of time would be easier than little bits every week.

 

Personally, I'd just do what you can and pay the difference end of the year if you have too. That way you had some presence at the school but don't have to stress so much about fulfilling every minute.

 

It's sort of crazy for then to think a mom who will be on her own most of the year with little ones will be able to sit in the office 2 hours a week.


 

I don't understand either why the hours can't be done at home, I suppose maybe then everyone wants to do it from home and nothing at the school gets done? Working an event during non-school hours might be even more difficult since it would involve finding a babysitter for four kids rather than just two.

 

It seems like the volunteer hours would be really difficult for most all parents. Those who work would have to take time off or use vacation time and those with little kids would need a babysitter. The more I think about it the more I wonder if the whole 'mandatory volunteering' thing is really just a way to raise the tuition while not making it look they raised it. I could see parents who are able to volunteer (and perhaps run the pta) pushing for something like this rather than a tuition hike since they were already doing volunteer hours anyway.

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#5 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 06:39 AM
 
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I guess I'm not sure why you wouldn't want to volunteer.  I understand it takes up time, and that the activities assigned to the mom you spoke with sound boring, but you could volunteer for some specific activity, or to help with field trips.  My sister goes to a private school that has required parental volunteering.   The purpose of it is to lighten the schools financial burden and to keep parents involved with their children's schooling. 

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#6 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 06:54 AM
 
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That's a strange policy - it seems to assume that there is a stay at home parent in each family or at the very least that one parent's work schedule is very flexible.

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#7 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 07:00 AM
 
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I don't think it's about not wanting to volunteer.  I'm guessing is all about the 80 hours and nothing you can do at home part. Plus, I don't see the point of having parents volunteer when there isn't any real work for them. Plus, not all parents should be on campus honestly. I'd rather have 20 that were devoted and high quality than 40 with several who gossip, handle the other kids poorly, and worse.

 

To OP, I'd try to connect with other military families right off the bat and perhaps arrange a babysitting exchange so that you can all get in there without paying for babysitting!

 

 

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Originally Posted by KempsMama View Post

I guess I'm not sure why you wouldn't want to volunteer.  I understand it takes up time, and that the activities assigned to the mom you spoke with sound boring, but you could volunteer for some specific activity, or to help with field trips.  My sister goes to a private school that has required parental volunteering.   The purpose of it is to lighten the schools financial burden and to keep parents involved with their children's schooling. 




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#8 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 07:52 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I guess I'm not sure why you wouldn't want to volunteer.  I understand it takes up time, and that the activities assigned to the mom you spoke with sound boring, but you could volunteer for some specific activity, or to help with field trips.  My sister goes to a private school that has required parental volunteering.   The purpose of it is to lighten the schools financial burden and to keep parents involved with their children's schooling. 



I certainly do want to volunteer. My issue with it is that the hours have to be done at the school, I don't have anyone to watch my younger kids, and they ask you to pay if you aren't able to 'volunteer'. It's not really volunteering when you have no choice. 

 

It's a Catholic school. The parish partially funds the school but it's not clear to what extent. The tuition is $8000 and the laundry list of fees comes to nearly another $3000. It's way, way more expensive than any Catholic school I've ever heard of. The school I went to as a child had a much lower tuition. It's currently up to $3400 a year plus $250 in fees. They do not require parents to volunteer, although, like any school, it is encouraged. The school is in an area where there are terrible public schools. There are hundreds of families who live on or work on the base and have little choice as to where to live. Roughly half of the students in the county go to a parochial school and this is the only Catholic one. My dad is a teacher at a Catholic school and our conclusion is that the school charges as much as their 'market' allows them to. The parish also has a tithe, the traditional 10%, which we will not be able to pay and therefore will not be able to be parishioners there (you have to apply in person with proof of your income and set up direct deposit to the church with your bank). We donate to whichever church we attend but with four kids we simply can't pay all that tuition plus 10% of our gross (they don't accept just net) income. The whole parish does things with money that I find terrible but they're the only game in town. I guess what I'm saying is: how much of a financial burden does this school and parish really have for the parents to lighten? 

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#9 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 08:22 AM
 
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I question if its the right school for you because they sound petty, and if that is there attitude on this one issue, I suspect it will show up in lots of other ways.

 

My kids go to private school with mandatory volunteer hours, no exceptions, not even to pay money instead. But the policy is VERY different.

 

First, volunteer hours are required per family, rather than per child. So it doesn't matter if you have one child at the school or 4, it's the same number of hours for the parent.

 

Second, there are numerous options for the work, including helping with maintenance, the computer network, etc. Many families provide professional services to the school outside of school hours and it saves the school a ton of money (which mean more of the tuition money goes for the kids rather than to keep the building working). Some families do things like adopt part of the grounds and make a garden or wildlife refuge. Some parents help arrange internships for seniors. There are occasional work days on Saturday when we end up doing things like deep cleaning and painting. Some families get their hours in completely during non-school hours, and much of the time that is volunteered is worth far more than $10 an hour.

 

Their reason for the "no exceptions to the policy" are quite simple -- almost everyone would qualify for an exception! Most of our families are two income, there are some single moms, and the very few SAHMs have younger children at home. Some working parents arrange their schedules so they can spend an hour at school each week, and some take personal days to go on field trips or to come in and do a special project with the kids. 

 

I exceed the amount of time required of our family working as a play ground monitor and in the library. I love being at my kids school, and I enjoy working with the students.

 

"she said her volunteer time was spent sitting next to a phone waiting for it to ring, cutting out shapes that their kids said were never used," I seriously doubt that a school that would require that an adult spend their time this way is going to have your children use their time wisely.

 

I have NO problem with mandatory volunteer time at a school that a parent selects. You know what you are getting into, you know what they except. You are deciding if this is a good fit for your family.


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#10 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 08:35 AM
 
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Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post

 

It's a Catholic school. The parish partially funds the school but it's not clear to what extent. The tuition is $8000 and the laundry list of fees comes to nearly another $3000. It's way, way more expensive than any Catholic school I've ever heard of. The school I went to as a child had a much lower tuition. It's currently up to $3400 a year plus $250 in fees. 



Hate to say it, but $3400 is ridiculously low in this day and age.  And even $8K is pretty low IMO.  Around here, non-parochial private schools are $15K/yr.  The Catholic HS that I went to is closing it's doors at the end of this school year after 130 years because even at $15K+, tuition is not sufficient to cover the expenses of running the school. 

 

As for the volunteer hours, I would definitely talk to someone about how you would like to utilize those hours, rather than expecting them to put you to work.  Come up with a project to do with your child's class, organize a bake sale, something.  Whatever you want to do, it'll be better for you if it takes a good chunk of your yearly hours for the one project (and not just the 2 hrs/week).  Ask about the school carnival and other big events like that, and then talk to some of the other military moms about swapping childcare or even making a babysitting co-op so one mom is watching all the kids while 2 or 3 of you get your hours done at once.  If you're willing to do the volunteer work, the rest can be figured out.  And if you'd rather pay the fee, then do that, and don't stress over it.  Chances are good that that is the exact reason why they give you that option. 

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#11 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 08:55 AM
 
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I would just do what hours you can and then pay the rest. We have the kids in Montessori.We pay tuition,various fees,and if we don't get our volunteer hours in we can end up paying an extra $700 in addition to the 10k tuition. Yea it kind of stinks,but that is what is required if you put your kids in that school. It is just to bad that they(your school) require hours for each kid,because in our school is it per family.

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#12 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 09:18 AM
 
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Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post
 The school is in an area where there are terrible public schools. There are hundreds of families who live on or work on the base and have little choice as to where to live.


I'd expand your search for housing. You don't have to live on base. It's sounds like your DH is going to be gone a lot anyway so it's not even about his commute time. If you don't like the public school right there and you don't like the private school, expand your search.

 

You have a choice.


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#13 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 09:20 AM
 
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Don't get stuck on the 'mandatory volunteer' moniker. Call it mandatory parent participation.  It's normal and some public charter schools require it.  Yes, one of its purposes is to raise money outside of tuition and obvious fees.  The other purpose is to keep parents involved and invested, not just financially but emotionally.  When parents are doing useful work at the school it builds community, where parents, staff and admin are working together for the benefit of the children.  When parents are working for an hour or two in the school they get to know the staff better, get a feel for the vibe.  This is hugely beneficial for the kids. Contrast it with most schools where kids are dropped off in the morning, picked up in the afternoon and parents don't care to know what's going on, don't meet the teachers more than once at the beginning of the year, and just aren't invested in creating and supporting a really healthy, vibrant community.  The kids only benefit when parents are involved. 

 

I agree, it's unreasonable that they don't allow simple work to be done at home.  It's a shame that parents are assigned busy work, simply for the purpose of getting their hours out of the way.  I agree, I think some parochial/private schools squander this amazing resource that is their parents.  I think they loose sight of what's supposed to be the point of requiring parents to participate. 

 

Edited to add, OP you might ask the parent coordinator at the school if there is an existing parent babysitting swap program.  Seriously, you can't be the only parent with small children that need looking after.  If it doesn't exist than you might volunteer to put one together. That would easily take care of 2 hours volunteer time right there. orngbiggrin.gif


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#14 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 09:26 AM
 
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I guess that if I were chosing to send kids into this school, which already had these volunteer requirements, I would expect to complete them or I would make a different choice.  If you were already involved in the school and they sprung this on you or if it were a public school, sure, I'd fight it.  But the volunteer hours are part of the deal and I'm sure you aren't the only parent for whom it's not convenient.  In this day and age, I can't think of any families that would find this convenient, to be honest.

 

I also agree with a pp who mentioned that it might be an indication of the general tone of the school.

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Have you actually spoken with anyone at the school? It seems like you're going on second hand info, which is never a good way to make a decision.
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#16 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 11:58 AM
 
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We have volunteer hours but per family not per child, and we are allowed to do them at home. Almost all of our hours are from doing  work from home except for making/serving hot lunch which is required per family as well. DH works on their computers, build a website, I cook for the class, trips, etc... I can se the younger child policy, I am allowed to bring my children in with me to the school if I wanted to but I don't, I am am not productive that way and since I'd have to pay a sitter $10.00 an hour as well, I just work at home. 

 

I guess I'd question why some of this couldn't be done at home, if they are not interested in that then I'd plan on paying the fee. 


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#17 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 12:21 PM
 
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My sister goes to a Catholic school as well, and they have a similar program.   Mom's with younger kids usually volunteer for activities they can include the younger ones in.  Several mom's bring their younger ones with, the school is very family orientated.  Perhaps you could ask about bringing the little ones with you?  I have brought my two boys to my sisters school on several occasions when I'm up visiting.  We have lunch with my sister, and volunteer to help with P.E.  DS1 gets to run around with the older kids and DS2 loves to observe all the activity.


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Quote:
Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post
The parish also has a tithe, the traditional 10%, which we will not be able to pay and therefore will not be able to be parishioners there (you have to apply in person with proof of your income and set up direct deposit to the church with your bank). We donate to whichever church we attend but with four kids we simply can't pay all that tuition plus 10% of our gross (they don't accept just net) income. The whole parish does things with money that I find terrible but they're the only game in town. I guess what I'm saying is: how much of a financial burden does this school and parish really have for the parents to lighten? 


 

That sounds weird.  I would write to the Archdiocese about that.  Church is for everyone, not just those who are able to set up direct deposit.

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#19 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 05:30 PM
 
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The official tithe thing gets families a discount on tuition at the school. Any one can go to church.
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#20 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 07:22 PM
 
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UGH!  I would NOT want to be part of a church that requires you to direct deposit money to it.

 

Now, on to the school.

 

My son attends a public magnet school where part of the requirement is that parents volunteer a half day per week per child.  The first year, it's all classroom, subsequent years, usually this is people with multiple children can sign up for various jobs that count as X many hours.  IT can be a parent or another adult, but *someone* has to do your "commitment."  It is made very clear when you sign up that this is NOT an "optional volunteer" thing, this is part of the agreement of your child being part of this school.

 

That said, I would be IRATE if I were spending my time waiting for a phone to ring or being janitorial staff!  We were all explicitly told that interacting with students comes FIRST, unless we are directly told on any given day that something else needs to happen *right now* instead.  We are expected to go to the music, gym, art classes that happen in our time and help there.  We are expected to go out to recess unless told differently on a specific day.  We go with the kids and help in the lunchroom.  Other than rest time (my son is K) there is no time we're expected to be sitting in a corner cutting stuff out or running copies or anything--even when the teacher is leading circle time, one adult (there are always 2-3 "on duty") is expected to be sitting near the group, watching and moving closer to anyone who might need a closer adult presence.  (When I'm there, we take turns being "on duty" or doing 'parent work')

 

The adults are there to provide extra adult supervision, support, help in the classrooms--not to help the custodial staff or the secretary.


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#21 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 07:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post
It's a Catholic school. The parish partially funds the school but it's not clear to what extent. The tuition is $8000 and the laundry list of fees comes to nearly another $3000. It's way, way more expensive than any Catholic school I've ever heard of. The school I went to as a child had a much lower tuition. It's currently up to $3400 a year plus $250 in fees. They do not require parents to volunteer, although, like any school, it is encouraged. The school is in an area where there are terrible public schools. There are hundreds of families who live on or work on the base and have little choice as to where to live. Roughly half of the students in the county go to a parochial school and this is the only Catholic one. My dad is a teacher at a Catholic school and our conclusion is that the school charges as much as their 'market' allows them to. The parish also has a tithe, the traditional 10%, which we will not be able to pay and therefore will not be able to be parishioners there (you have to apply in person with proof of your income and set up direct deposit to the church with your bank). We donate to whichever church we attend but with four kids we simply can't pay all that tuition plus 10% of our gross (they don't accept just net) income. The whole parish does things with money that I find terrible but they're the only game in town. I guess what I'm saying is: how much of a financial burden does this school and parish really have for the parents to lighten? 



 

 The whole 10% thing is seriously outrageous!  My understanding was that was a Biblical guideline, not a rule.  If the church is demanding that, I wouldn't want to be part of it.  It sounds like they are greedy and deviating from Catholic teaching.  They are also assuming their members are a bunch of liars whose income must be verified.

 

About the school... it also sounds like they are taking advantage of their situation with the poor public schools.  Have you ever considered sending your children to a different private school (for instance a Christian or Lutheran one)?  The suggestion probably sounds ridiculous, but I say this only from the standpoint of someone who attended a Catholic elementary school and a Lutheran Middle and High School only because my mom was a former teacher whose main goal was to have us in the best schools period.  You would think it would be confusing, but my siblings and I actually did quite well and never had any issues "standing out" or anything.  Having been brought up with Christian values seemed to be enough.   This might not be a good solution for your family, but thought I'd throw it out there as an alternative to being forced to do 80 hours of busy work a year and pay that high of a tuition. 

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#22 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 08:14 PM
 
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If I wanted the kids to goto the school, I would look for or start a babysitting swap. I'd be surprised if there wasn't one aready, plus the young kids get to make new friends as well.

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#23 of 71 Old 01-31-2011, 08:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I haven't checked this thread since yesterday. Time to post, huh?

 

The church is open to anyone, you certainly don't have to pay to go to mass but if you want to be a parishioner (sort of an official member of that parish) then you have to tithe. There is no way we can pay the tithe plus tuition so we will have the kids attend at the non-parishioner rate. Parishioners only save $400-something off the tuition bill. We will have to pay extra for some programs if we want to participate in them that are offered to parishioner for free. I really feel the tithe and high tuition are because it's the only parish and school within daily driving distance of the town and base.

 

We need to live on base. We're only going to be there for approximately two years. We've seen too many people buy houses then not be able to sell them to want to buy one. We won't fit in an apartment and rental houses are scarce, very expensive, and often in not so great neighborhoods. Housing is a big issue with those stationed at this base, we've been on a waiting list since last summer for a house.

 

I spoke with someone at the school again this morning. I didn't get many details last time and was mostly going off their website. Yes, the hours MUST be done at school or on school grounds (like the fun job of picking up garbage in the parking lot). Younger children, older children, babies, family members who have not passed a background check, friends, etc. are not allowed under any circumstances. Period. The parent who I spoke to on the phone said she wasn't aware of a babysitting swap but she would look into it.

 

Last year the school had 247 students. At 40 hours per student that's 9,880 volunteer hours, assuming everyone did every hour and no one did any more than 40. With a 40 week school year and 7 hour school day that's 1400 hours of school per year. That means they have an average of seven volunteers every hour of every school day, not including days off which pushes that number higher. That's a lot of volunteers! No wonder each bathroom has an adult attendant! I suppose some events draw more volunteers but still.

 

This whole thing is just rubbing me the wrong way. 

 

christeen -  I feel the school is very expensive for an elementary school. High schools are significantly more. I've talked to a couple dozen people about it and everyone as agreed that it's a pricy school because there are no other options for Catholic parents who prefer their children no attend a non-Catholic school or the public schools.

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#24 of 71 Old 02-01-2011, 06:54 AM
 
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The church is open to anyone, you certainly don't have to pay to go to mass but if you want to be a parishioner (sort of an official member of that parish) then you have to tithe. There is no way we can pay the tithe plus tuition so we will have the kids attend at the non-parishioner rate. Parishioners only save $400-something off the tuition bill. We will have to pay extra for some programs if we want to participate in them that are offered to parishioner for free. I really feel the tithe and high tuition are because it's the only parish and school within daily driving distance of the town and base.



Write to the archdiocese was my first reaction, too, as it sounded that you basically have to pay at the door to go to mass...sorry, but this is still a weird setup. I wonder whether there are two lines for communion, one for the "real" parishioners, one for the second rate kind? Do they get the point of communion? The relation to "community"? Ugh.

 

I'd seriously question whether I wanted to be part of either school or church...but if you have no choice I guess you have to suck it up for two years. The babysitting swap sounds like the best option forthem to be able to waste your time. Or maybe you can seriously impress them with your cooking skills and promise more of that wonderful stuff  uif they'll only let you prepare it at home?

 

hug2.gif Sounds like a tough situation!


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#25 of 71 Old 02-01-2011, 07:11 AM
 
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I'm curious about your original question - "Should I fight the mandatory volunteer hours?". I'm not sure how you would fight this policy.  

 

Since it's a private school, the Board of Governors (or whomever) can set whatever policies it likes, can't they? They don't have a lot of incentive to change it. It provides several benefits to the school: 

 

- it a useful "weeding out" tool for narrowing the kind of families that apply to the school 

- it provides a source of income

- it ensures they have a large population of labourers to keep the school clean, the students supervised, and frees teachers from non-instructional chores like photocopying. If parent volunteers help with school clean-up, it frees the janitorial staff to do heavier, more complicated maintenance. Bathroom supervision probably means the bathrooms stay cleaner.  These things should reduce operating budget for janitorial services, but likely they are using the budget in other areas that public schools don't maintain (does the private school have "extras" like a school theatre with professional lighting, an indoor pool, tennis courts or - like one private school I know - a target range?). Bathroom supervision also helps address bullying and trouble-making.  Presumably, if the teachers aren't doing non-instructional chores, they have more time with students to help them with the achievements that they brag about in the school literature and website for marketing purposes. 

 

I understand why this policy is problematic for you, but I'm not sure how you can force a change. I think you may be able to get some help finding babysitting or possibly changing the policy on off-site volunteering. 

 

BTW, allowing younger children who aren't students on-site opens up potential liability issues for them, so they have little incentive to change this policy either. 

 

Good luck with it. 

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Quote:
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I'm curious about your original question - "Should I fight the mandatory volunteer hours?". I'm not sure how you would fight this policy.  


yes, back to your original question and your first post:
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post
 I'm wondering if just paying the 'fine' would be easier and cheaper since a babysitter will likely run $10 an hour but I don't want to be the parent who didn't volunteer.


In social terms, it's far better to be the parent who followed the policy (even if it you choose the pay rather than participate option) rather than the parent who starts off fighting before you even get there.  After you get involved in the school and really see how things work, proposing changes is totally different.

 

At our school, if a parent who didn't have a child at the schools said they wanted to change things/fight things, it would not be taken at all seriously. At this point, you really don't know what they've tried in the past and has failed, what the budget looks like, etc. You really don't even know the point is of the tasks they have parents do.

 

Was the phone thing so a school employee could have a lunch break? It's one of the community service options for high schoolers at my kids school -- use their lunch break to answer the phone so the receptionist has a break. It's just to make sure that if someone calls, they get a real person. It is, actually, a job that matters. It isn't one that I would like to do, so I do other things.

 

 


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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It's a Catholic school. The parish partially funds the school but it's not clear to what extent. The tuition is $8000 and the laundry list of fees comes to nearly another $3000. It's way, way more expensive than any Catholic school I've ever heard of. The school I went to as a child had a much lower tuition. It's currently up to $3400 a year plus $250 in fees. 



Hate to say it, but $3400 is ridiculously low in this day and age.  And even $8K is pretty low IMO.  Around here, non-parochial private schools are $15K/yr.  The Catholic HS that I went to is closing it's doors at the end of this school year after 130 years because even at $15K+, tuition is not sufficient to cover the expenses of running the school. 

 

As a comparison, we're paying $4500 for Catholic preschool for dd next year. We are in a low cost-of-living area, and the cost beginning in kindergarten is around $7000.  So I don't see the price of this school in particular (esp with the info that there are only 250 students) are particularly high, to be honest.

 

What about homeschooling them? That may be an easier option and definitely would be cheaper. You could afford some babysitting hours to get a break if you're not paying the tuition.

 


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Personally I wouldnt send my kid to this school but thats just me.  The whole required work in addition to tution just rubs me the wrong way.  What happens if someone can't pass the background check?  There are a million and one 'what if's'  Wanting to volunteer is one thing, demanding it is something totally different.  As a parent I do not want all those folks in the school, background cleared or not.

 

However if you need to do the 'volun-told' thing I bet there is a babysitting swap set up or the like.  Why not continue homeschooling?


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Quote:
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post

 

It's a Catholic school. The parish partially funds the school but it's not clear to what extent. The tuition is $8000 and the laundry list of fees comes to nearly another $3000. It's way, way more expensive than any Catholic school I've ever heard of. The school I went to as a child had a much lower tuition. It's currently up to $3400 a year plus $250 in fees. 



Hate to say it, but $3400 is ridiculously low in this day and age.  And even $8K is pretty low IMO.  Around here, non-parochial private schools are $15K/yr.  The Catholic HS that I went to is closing it's doors at the end of this school year after 130 years because even at $15K+, tuition is not sufficient to cover the expenses of running the school. 

 

As a comparison, we're paying $4500 for Catholic preschool for dd next year. We are in a low cost-of-living area, and the cost beginning in kindergarten is around $7000.  So I don't see the price of this school in particular (esp with the info that there are only 250 students) are particularly high, to be honest.

 

What about homeschooling them? That may be an easier option and definitely would be cheaper. You could afford some babysitting hours to get a break if you're not paying the tuition.

 

 

You're right, homeschooling is cheap by comparison. We spend around $500 on books and materials for both of them. I'd say another $500 for other things. It's very inexpensive for a quality education.

 

We've been homeschooling. It's pulling teeth to get anything done with the two little ones around plus the kids want to go to school. They went for a couple month to a Catholic school while we were in the process of moving and enjoyed it. We could afford babysitting but finding a babysitter who is both old enough and willing to watch four kids at one time has been pretty much impossible for us. There is the on base daycare and in home providers but they are not allowed to take unvaccinated kids (I'm able to get an exemption for the school). We have found it to be really easy to find 12 and 13 year old babysitters but four kids are often difficult for me to handle, I don't feel it's safe to leave them with someone that young. I tried a mother's helper but the kids spent the whole time trying to see what I was doing and didn't want to stay with the girl watching them. 

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