Thursday, July 2, 2015

Intro. & Coca-Cola

The introduction of the book contextualized our conversation yesterday nicely. The big message I read is the importance to continue to ask critical questions and analyze the infiltration of messages that reach our students from "Go."

It also highlights the origin of these message - from a just a few (relatively speaking) corporate giants. One glaring sentiment I hear among teachers is... He/she can't get a notebook for class, but has new Nikes and an iPhone...  I would suggest that it isn't a very conscious decision for a student to prioritize between a notebook or "fitting" in - the values that have been deemed of the utmost importance are certainly NOT blaring from ESPN with the MVP of the NBA preaching about school and being prepared for it. Those messages instead are reserved for PSAs - funny how it's called  a
"service." Is it because the famous cast starring in them do it for free? I suppose it's better than nothing, it's just sad that it has to exist at all in order to combat for space in the midst of the other messages.

A few years back, the school store at a high school I worked at would net about $20,000 a year. Those funds paid for prom, the senior picnic, yearbooks, graduation regalia -- it was a fund for the students.

When a new company won the contract with the school department, they shut down the school store due to the no competition clause. I understand protecting students from the Coca-Cola message/marketing/branding in schools. But there is something very dirty and sinister about going after the funds that support the most poverty stricken students in the state. Maybe because I witnessed it first-hand - how the numbers of attendees at prom declined, leftover yearbooks that became a loss to the school, etc.... It has been about 9 years ... $180,000...and it still makes my stomach turn to think about it.

1 comment:

  1. Laura, I understand your frustration about the school store being shut down. It seems as though sometimes leaders do not have the best interests of the children or maybe it's because they do not understand the effect that things have on our kids. I think that people that make these decisions should spend a day at school or maybe go to prom and see how a simple dance can change a students perspective on school. This made me think of the quote, "The very things that nourish us, also destroy us."