High School Rewards Students With Gift Cards For Showing Up To Class

Forget the images of truant officers chasing no-good punk school-skippers out of soda jerks or stories of headline-chasing judges sentencing parents to community service because they can’t get their teens to show up to school. One Ohio high school is going the opposite route and using monetary rewards to lure its students into their seats every morning.

The Dohn Community High School in Cincinnati is rewarding students with solid attendance and a clean discipline record with anywhere from $10-25 in Visa gift cards, along with $5 deposits into savings accounts set up for those who choose not to skip.

“Our student population is 90 percent poverty,” a school administrator tells CBS Cleveland. “Money is important to them. We can’t teach them if they’re not here.”

One teenager loves the idea, telling CBS, “I’m very excited to get the money… It makes me want to come to school on time, not that I don’t. But some students don’t have the money and this will help them. It’s a good idea.”

It’s a last-ditch attempt by the school, which had been designated an “academic emergency” by the state and which only saw around 14% of its students graduate last year.

The program just began this week but the school says attendance is already up 15%.

Cincinnati High School Paying Students To Come To School [CBS Local]


Edit Your Comment

  1. Coffee says:
    • Murph1908 says:

      From the article:

      “The overjustification effect is controversial because it challenges previous findings in psychology on the general effectiveness of reinforcement on increasing behavior”

      This just may be oversimplification for a Wiki article, but I don’t think the effect challenges the reinforcement theory. Part of the reinforcement theory is what’s known as “variable schedule of reinforcement.”

      If you give the reward every time:
      A- the behavior is learned quicker
      B- the behavior is abandoned quicker if the rewards cease
      C- the effect of the reward is diminished

      Promising the kids the reward every time fits right into these effects of non-variable reinforcement.

      Conversely, if you randomize when a reward is given for a behavior:
      A- the behavior is not learned as quickly
      B- the behavior is maintained longer even when the rewards cease.

      So if you are training your dog, don’t praise him or give him a treat every time he performs the trick you want. Randomize it. It may take a little longer to solidify the behavior, but he’ll keep doing it even when you can’t give him the treat every time, or aren’t there to do so.

      This is also why we idiots keep going out to the golf course, even though the game is aggrivating at times. That one great shot every now and then keeps us repeating the behavior of coming out to play.

      Sadly, it’s also the reason why some people stay in abusive relationships. The occasional love shown is the varied reinforcement for staying.

      • Coffee says:

        You make a good point about variable ratio reinforcement schedules increasing behavior, but I would posit a couple things:

        1. Kids are not dogs…with a dog, you can shape behavior via variable ratio reinforcement, then slowly reduced the frequency of reinforcement and the learned behavior will be pretty well ingrained. With a kid, sure, the variable ratio reinforcement may work while it exists, but the moment you move him to another school or this program ends, I’m guessing that he’ll go back to truancy. We’ll see.

        2. Sports are actually also a great example of the overjustification effect. Someone who is only marginally good at basketball might play two or three times in pick-up games, whereas an NBA player will hold out and refuse to play because he’s “only” earning $4,000,000 this year. Listening to sports radio, I’ve heard any number of athletes say it’s just a business. Presumably, they enjoyed playing at some point, right?

    • juniper says:

      … but this theory has been debated hotly in urban schools, and there have been studies to show that regardless of the motivation, whether intrinsic or extrinsic, getting kids in school and learning will increase their knowledge and academic abilities. (Even the wiki article shows a reference to this re: the Book It! Program.)

      In an urban school setting where there is zero-to-little buy-in from parents, kids and teens are embedded in the cycle of poverty already, and learning as its own reward was junked generations ago, paying kids to attend gets kids to attend. Period.

      Note, of course, that this is a last resort, just like the school says it is. If there was a chance of getting kids to want to show up for school of their own accord because of the intrinsic value of learning, this method wouldn’t work and might damage the kids. Look, I hate this kind of shit as much as anyone, but in urban education, pragmatism wins every time.

      • Coffee says:

        I guess you have a point…if this is, indeed, an academic emergency and all other avenues have been exhausted, I suppose a desperation move is necessary.

        the concern I have is that people aren’t like dogs vis a vis reinforcement, and once that reinforcer is gone, the negative behavior will resume. To make matters even worse, you run the risk of extrinsically motivating students who were actually interested in learning, thereby lowering their intrinsic motivation. Later, when the gift cards are gone, you now have even fewer students who are actually interested in learning than you had to begin with.

        Having said that, I’ve never been in a school that bad (although I’ve taught at some iffy ones in “bad” Mexican neighborhoods), so maybe there really aren’t very many interested students to begin with.

        • Tegan says:

          As part of a music education major in Cincinnati, I did some classes in Cincinnati public schools. I’m not familiar with this school in particular, but if it’s anything like the high schools I saw, there really just aren’t that many interested students to begin with.

    • BorkBorkBork says:

      Although the ethics may be debated, I wonder if this is a cheaper alternative (monetarily) than some other highly funded efforts to improve school performance.

      • madsquabbles says:

        ass whoopin’s used to work back when i was in school. they didn’t cost much back then, seems you have to murder someone to get a spanking now-a-days.

  2. Cat says:

    More government handouts? How about taking back our money from their parents if their kids DON’T go to school?



    • Coffee says:

      Where I work, we have a satellite program where they teach GED classes to Native Americans. When our funding was cut, we had to reduce out lab hours, and the students were furious. I was confused at first, until someone explained to me that they receive something like $7/hour to attend the classes.

      For years, this particular ABE program had been open to people for as long as they needed it (some people need more help than others), but when we went back and looked at student test scores, many would improve for two quarters, then regress for two quarters, a pattern that continued for two or three years straight.

      Turns out that some of the students didn’t want to get their GED at all…they considered going to these classes their job and were content to game the system. After we did the internal audit, we revised the program so that if progress is not made after two quarters, the student is removed from the program. They were apoplectic, but it was the right thing to do.

    • Duke_Newcombe-Making children and adults as fat as pigs says:

      Yes, because we all know what “those people” are who are the parents and kids are in this school are like.

  3. u1itn0w2day says:

    Like rewarding a dog for fetching the paper with a biscut. If you are going to treat & train kiddies like a dog at least give them something to eat. This goes beyond giving the bad news bears a trophy simply for showing up to play a game.

  4. marc6065 says:

    Great reinforce that welfare mentality!!! I am sure 95% of the kids that get these gift card to show up to school are in the welfare/food stamp cycle. If they had responsible parents in the first place they would be in school in the first place. Now we have their parents and the school system teaching them how to be parasites on society and the people that actually work to support their pathetic asses.

    • ghostfire says:

      So you’re saying… what? Take them away from their parents? Mad-scientist style brain swap their parents with more responsible adults? Mass euthanization? The facts are that the kids are already there, already born to parents in poverty, and that keeping them in school is the best way to try and break that cycle. Maybe you’d like these kids to be little idealists – recognizing intrinsically the value of education and not seeing these tiny amounts of money as an enticement – but they’re not.

      • Greg Ohio says:

        Shhhh… There’s a GOP primary going on, and the candidates are trying to out-crazy each other. Don’t give them ideas, or we’re going to have brain-transplant Romney vs. mass-euthanasia Santorum.

        Gingrich makes his own bad ideas.

      • TheMansfieldMauler says:

        No one is advocating anything close to the idiotic crap you somehow made up. There is not a static correlation between being poor and being responsible. Just because they’re poor doesn’t mean they are automatically averse to education. The parents need to be responsible. Period. There are plenty of very well known examples of very successful people who grew up poor and were instilled by their responsible parents with a sense of the value of education.

        This giving money to the kids does nothing to change the attitudes of the parents, who are the biggest influence of education-related attitudes on the children. All it does is reinforce their already-prevalent mentality that free money comes from the government.

        • FatLynn says:

          Okay, they don’t have responsible parents. Now what? We just give up on the kids?

          • TheMansfieldMauler says:

            No one is saying give up on kids. But this reward system is not the answer you’re looking for.

        • ghostfire says:

          If the parents were responsible people, they wouldn’t have kids in poverty. Sure, some of them might be cases where they could have had children at a time when they had good jobs and support, then fallen into it, but I actually do believe that many, if not most, of these kids are on the “welfare/food stamp cycle”. You don’t think that a student body where 90% live in poverty has any correlation to a 15% graduation rate? I do, and while I agree with the idea that the parents *should* be teaching their kids the value of education, obviously they’re not. It’s in society’s best interest to have the kids graduate high school, regardless of parental attitude or involvement.

          The kids already exist. They have irresponsible, impoverished parents. These are two things that we cannot change unless you go with the clearly sarcastic ideas I mentioned.

    • rmorin says:

      If they had responsible parents in the first place they would be in school in the first place.

      But they aren’t responsible. I agree that is a large part of the problem. However you have to either try to address students motivation or parents.

      What can you do to the parents? Is it legal to charge them with crimes for their kids not showing up? Can you penalize or reward them really in any way?

      Instead this school tries to motivate students. This is not reinforcing a welfare cycle because they actually have to do something to get their reward. If anything it is teaching them that if they do what they are supposed to, they will be rewarded. Then with a high school degree, hopefully these students will be less of a leach on society. You have to remember kids in high school are kids 14-18(hopefully) years old, we should be putting them in a place to succeed so they don’t have to be welfare-cycle adults.

      I hate people that are content in the welfare cycle as much as anyone, this just does not seem to be the case here.

    • Duke_Newcombe-Making children and adults as fat as pigs says:

      Are you in favor of Wall Street bonuses, since they appear to have had the same effect?

  5. RiverStyX says:

    A year for only $25? Pfft, I make more then that.

    • The Porkchop Express says:

      but if they gave you that to go to school you would have said “I make more than that”.

      -Sorry, had to

      • Coffee says:

        If you had gone to post-secondary school, you would have learned to put the period inside the quotation marks.


        • InsertPithyNicknameHere says:

          Well, maybe Porkchop is one of our neighbors from the North. They follow British grammatical rules, for the most part, which state that punctuation goes outside the quotation marks.

          • Coffee says:

            Now this is the story all about how,
            My life got flipped, turned upside down,
            And I’d like to take a minute, just sit right there,
            I’ll tell you how learn the period don’t always go there.

            • Coffee says:

              Wow…that fourth line is full of grammar fail. I guess that’s what I get for being a smartass.

              • InsertPithyNicknameHere says:

                Don’t worry, I spent many many years working in customer service. Compared to many of the people I spoke to on the phones, you sound like a Rhodes scholar. :)

        • elangomatt says:

          You went for the correction of putting the period inside the quotation marks but ignored the lack of capitalization at the beginning of the sentence and starting the sentence with a preposition?

          (I double checked above for mistakes but I didn’t find any. I’ll take my own medicine just fine if I missed something.)

        • ChuckECheese says:

          Unless you were from England.

  6. InsertPithyNicknameHere says:

    I doubt that simply showing up and being a warm body in a seat is enough to significantly improve a student’s chances of graduating. Of course, I’ll be the first to admit that I cannot understand *not* showing up to school when you’re supposed to be there. I’m lucky enough to have a life-long love of learning that outweighed the absolutely miserable social experiences I had.

  7. homehome says:

    It’s a very short sighted solution. Teaching entitlement at an early age. I think they should take that money and concentrate on the kids that are actually there.

    • Velvet Jones says:

      When I was in school the reward for not showing up was a extremely sore butt from the principals paddle. Amazing attendance was always close to 100%.

  8. FreeMarketFan says:

    And where is this money coming from? Because I shudder thinking allocation of resources is being used as a carrot to to bait youths to go to school.

    If these high-school kids don’t want to go to school, so be it. They don’t want to learn and just hold back the kids that actually want to excel in life. There will always be a need for ditch diggers, burger flippers and wal-mart cashiers.

    And if you feel compelled to use “rewards” at least make it for something like taking an AP course instead of just breathing air and taking space.

  9. VintageLydia says:

    Doesn’t this punish kids who are absent for legitimate reasons? I know if some kid had the flu, I wouldn’t want him coming in to school anyway. And what about funerals and other family emergencies?

    • raydee wandered off on a tangent and got lost says:

      Well, according to what was posted here, “solid attendance and a clean discipline record” where “solid” could be taken any way. I imagine it means more “no unexcused absences” rather than “no absences at all.”

      So if you have a doctor’s note or a funeral note, you’re golden, but if you don’t show up, and don’t have a note, you’re in poo corner.

      In my high school, you could still get “Perfect attendance” certificates, even if you’ve missed days, so long as every absence was excused with a note.

  10. TinyNinjas says:

    This seems like it would be teaching kids to show up no matter what the cost. I already deal with coworkers showing up when they’re disgustingly sick and should be in bed, I don’t want this drilled into them when they’re young.

  11. AllanG54 says:

    Frankly, most of these kids should be in a vocational school where they can at least learn a skill that can be put to use in finding a job. I don’t see most of them heading off to college and I don’t think many of them give a damn about history, trig, etc.

    • InsertPithyNicknameHere says:

      That brings up a very good point. While I think that college can be useful, it seems that vocational education is disproportionately frowned upon. There is nothing shameful about being, for example, a long-haul trucker. It’s honest work that needs doing. I’m not suggesting that we push every under-performer into vocational schooling, but I think it should be a more clearly available option for those who want to go that route.

      • Kuri says:

        Good point. My dad does long haul trucking, and he admits he feels some pride in that when my mom and I go shopping there’s a decent chance he helped in some way to put those items on the shelf.

        Plus he gave me the tip that store brand yogurt was made at the Dannon plant.

    • u1itn0w2day says:

      Vocational education or a trade should never be considered a consulation prize.

      But you should at least get the kids a bare bones minimum hs diploma education. Just enough so that if they change their minds or have to change careers they can at least go to school as an adult.

      I don’t think cirriculum is the whole problem with kids not showing up though. Just like a bad boss can force an employee to leave a bad teacher or two can turn off a student to learning for life.

    • PlumeNoir - Thank you? No problem! says:

      My grandfather-in-law has a saying that goes along the lines of, “When everyone has a degree, the garbagemen will be rich” – meaning that they’d be willing to do a job that college-educated people may feel is “beneath them.”

      Number one rule I learned from the Breakfast Club: Always befriend the custodians. (Although, I also apply it to those jobs may seem “lesser” or are invisible to most people.) You’d be surprised at how valuable those kind of contacts can be…

      • ChuckECheese says:

        You coulda learned that lesson about the garbage collectors from watching “Serial Mom” too.

      • gc3160thtuk says you got your humor in my sarcasm and you say you got your sarcasm in my humor says:

        I agree. When I worked at Walmart I made a point of befriending the maintenance associates. They wee generally sweet guys and being good to them always meant they made a point of helping me when I needed trash picked up or a mop or broom. And they always knew if there was a spill and no one around to deal with it and they were busy I would help them. I know it sounds silly but my co-workers who angered them or took them for granted learned that making them mad meant always doing their own trash LOL.

  12. Miss Malevolent says:

    Hilarious…bribery to make folks stay in school…how far we’ve fallen as a society. Idiocracy here we come! (or are we already here?)

    • RedOryx says:

      But aren’t adults essentially bribed to stay at work? I mean, I like my job but I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the moola.

  13. pinkbunnyslippers says:

    Growing up, the kids that went to city schools in my town who worked hard and got good attendance got a free ride at the local private university (top 100 university – in the rust belt just like Cincin) if they chose to attend. Emphasis on that last part.

    Teaching kids to value a $25 gift card, really? That’s the best that a school district can do? Teach them to value an education and the life that gets them. Not a $25 card that will be blown at Five Below the day they get it.

  14. SlimDan22 says:

    This reminds me of when my High School had to raffle off Wii’s to get parents to come to parent teacher conferences.

  15. TheMansfieldMauler says:

    The only person being rewarded is the owner of the nearest convenience store.

  16. Greg Ohio says:

    It’s a good idea. People like positive reinforcement. My wife teaches in a relatively wealthy district and rewards kids with small treats (candy, stickers, etc.) when they make a good effort. It works, even though these kids have plenty of money to buy their own. Why? Because people like recognition.

  17. little stripes says:

    I bet a lot of these students don’t have enough money for food. This could be a good thing, if done right.

  18. u1itn0w2day says:

    Don’t start something you can’t finish. Oh that will be a great lesson, promise the kiddies onething and give them nothing when the money runs out. It will run out one day.

  19. speaky2k says:

    This sounds like what they do at some manufacturing plants in Juarez Mexico that the company I work for has equipment in. This is what was explained to me by one of the US managers working there: For the months of November & December nobody wants to work, they made enough money to live for the year so they just don’t show up. So for each day they show up they get a ticket in a drawing, 2 for working on a weekend. A few days before Christmas (which starts a plant shutdown until January) there is a drawing for prizes including new TV’s, Refrigerators, Stoves, washer/dryers, iPods, Computers, and other stuff which is all stacked in the break room, and you must be present to win. The people who show up each day have a stack of tickets, those who decided they don’t want to work have none. I think there were also smaller weekly prizes that you were entered in if you were there every day that week, but I am not sure about that… I was never there for a drawing, I just questioned why the appliances were in the break room.

  20. xamarshahx says:

    if they don’t wanna go to school, screw them. kids in third world countries have jobs and walk miles to get to a school. in the US, kids get free schooling and a ride and they still don’t want to go. it is not the schools job to baby them. let them learn the reality of not having an education.

    • FreeMarketFan says:

      Until they breed and have a bunch of kids with the same mentality. Then they breed and even have more idiotic children.

  21. sir_eccles says:

    I’m thinking of starting a class action lawsuit against my school for not offering this to me 20+ years ago. All I got instead was a good education that lead to a career and stuff.

  22. 10,000 Hours says:

    Why don’t we just send them to Scranton, PA and enroll them into the Scott’s Tots scholarship program?

  23. itsdotcom says:

    My school allows us to exempt our exams if we have perfect attendance or all 90’s. Good deal.

    • DrPizza says:

      That’s a shame. From an educational standpoint, exempting students from a final exam because of their grades (or attendance) is counter-productive. The studying that students do preparing for a final exam, and taking the final exam, increases the number of times the student is exposed to the material and helps develop better long term memory of those concepts.

  24. raybury says:

    Incentives work? They don’t teach that in guvmint skools.

  25. Excuse My Ambition Deficit Disorder says:

    I bet the taxpayers in Ohio are loving this…

    • neilb says:

      I drive by this place twice a day.
      Note: Cincinnati is known for its avant garde charters. In many ways, I think diversity is a great thing, though it will cause failures, for sure. Cinci has great public arts/tech schools and even a public Montessori.
      As an economist and cognitive psychologist, I love that they have the guts to try this “pay to stay” plan. Whatever makes it justifiable in the student’s mind to get through HS is welcome as part of the solution. I don’t see a problem with it at all.
      Remember, schools aren’t cheap and some schools are in such challenging neighborhoods that failure is almost guaranteed. We need avante garde approaches! Some really are working.

    • whatdoyoucare says:

      Well, I’m sure they are NOT enjoying the 14% graduation rate.

  26. MacUser1986 says:

    I hate when people get rewarded for things they should be doing in the first place. This is more apparent to a work environment, you go to work to work and get a paycheck why do you need anymore incentive to do your job?

  27. matti says:

    Definitely a bad idea. They should check out the experiments that Dan Ariely and other behavioural economists have performed. Pay for performance, often leads to poorer performance, bad ethical judgements (ie cheating to get the money), and narrow focus (focus on earning the money, not on learning).

  28. baristabrawl says:

    I appreciate the reference, but a soda jerk is the person who works at the soda shoppe. The actual shoppe is not called a soda jerk.

    For all of you that say, “This reward system is stupid!” Um…if they stopped paying you at your job would you show up?

    • InsertPithyNicknameHere says:

      No, I don’t think people would show up to their jobs if they weren’t paid (I sure wouldn’t). But, when I go to work, I am in some way working to contribute to society. Perhaps not directly, but my job contributes to the running of my employer, and my employer provides a needed service.

      Students are not actively contributing to society. Until they are employed, they are a drain on the system.

      This isn’t like saying you wouldn’t go to work unless they paid you, it’s like saying that you’d stop working if your employer didn’t agree to give you a raise.

  29. Nobody Owes You says:

    You can pay a horse to go to the water, but you can’t make him learn to drink it.

  30. exconsumer says:

    When I hear about kids who are so far down the socioeconomic and cultural scale that they don’t even show up for school. . . . You know, the kids who effectively have no parents, no real community support system to guide them through their childhood or to build life skills to carry them into adulthood . . and when I hear that they are getting paid for school in an effort to mitigate some of those circumstances, well, it just makes me want to stamp my feet and wag my finger. Ferociously.

    Seems these kids and this community need a good talking to.

    And another thing . . . the fact that I had great parents and great teachers and an entire community supporting my education and went to school every day at great school but DIDN’T GET A $25 GIFT CARD . . . well that is an outrage!!! And it hurts my feelings. And I don’t care who knows it!

    Do you hear me, community trying to salvage an otherwise wasted generation of students? You’re hurting my feelings with your gift cards! So you can just stop that nonsense right now!

  31. polishhillbilly says:

    Can I get that for work?

  32. Worstdaysinceyesterday says:

    There are things that are worth doing for their intrinsic or future value. This is not teaching those kids that.

    I am reminded of a woman in her 60’s that was in my college graduating class. She was beaten if she went to school because she was expected to stay on the (poor family in the south) farm and work in the field. She raised her kids and her grandkids with a 6th grade education, and all of them graduated college. Then she went back got her GED and Bachelor’s degree.

    I know many of these kids have their own struggles, and they cannot focus on anything past safety, food and shelter. But this is simply not how to promote a value in education and the improved future it can provide.

  33. Meghanp91 says:

    My boyfriend went to an alternative school for people from the ages of 16-21, which is literally last chance before you have to pay to finish high school. They did almost the same thing this past year, where at the end of the semester they gave out a backpack filled with school supplies, some packaged food, and some small gift cards to President’s Choice and Tim Horton’s if the student did relatively well and was there every day (obviously sick days were okay if a parent called in for you). The difference is they didn’t advertise that they were doing it beforehand. For the students that legitimately improved and practiced good attendance to get their education for the right reasons, it was a welcome reward. I don’t think setting out to bribe kids into school is a good idea, though. They should want to get their education to do well for themselves, not because they get free money out of it.

  34. MECmouse says:

    I’m so glad I don’t have to grow up with the majority of the kids these days!

  35. momtimestwo says:

    I’d rather they hand out free birth control than a VISA card.

  36. LightningUsagi says:

    “Forget the images of truant officers chasing no-good punk school-skippers out of soda jerks…”

    Isn’t a soda jerk a person, not a place?

  37. Hi_Hello says:

    I used to go to a 5th-8th school. In 6th grade, the teachers stop teaching. My science teacher was out most of the time and we had to copy textbooks and turn them in for our grades. I think my social study teacher was the only who was still teaching.

    I didn’t want to go to school but went for the free food and I had nowhere else to go. There was nothing to do at home…

    I’m glad I moved out of the area, went to a school they actually teach you things. Made me want to go to school to learn. Start caring what grades I got.

    It seems like the current school system is about getting kids ready for work. Teach them the fundamental, keep them in the education system as long as they can until they can get into the working system. If I was in grade school now, and learn that the only point of school is to get a job. I would stop at high school and find other ways to make money. I”m glad I figure out that is was about learning how to learn.

    I always figure a teacher’s job is to teach. If they can’t figure out how to teach those who don’t want to learn, they need to get a new job.

    I think kids, by nature are curious beings. Why else would they put stuff in their mouth when they are babies. People just need to figure it out. It’s not just the teacher who need to figure it out. The school system, the parents, the communities.

    These kids doesn’t just grow up to become min. wage worker, they also end up in prison. And they might cross path with you when they decide to mugged, rape, kill you.

  38. Gardius says:

    While the effectiveness and harmfulness of this approach can be debated, what scares the crap out of me is that 90% of the school population is living in poverty. That’s totally insane.

  39. ancientone567 says:

    sounds like a band aid on a gusher wound. Oh ya and now all kids will be like I am not going to class without getting paid!

  40. Snip says:

    “The Dohn Community High School in Cincinnati is rewarding students with solid attendance and a clean discipline record with anywhere from $10-25 in Visa gift cards, along with $5 deposits into savings accounts set up for those who choose not to skip.”

    That’s going to add up fast. I hope they have enough in their budget to keep paying it out, because if they ever stop their attendance numbers are going to take a nosedive. I agree that high attendance should be recognized, but this way of doing it is going to wind up biting that school in the butt. Plus, it’s one thing to get butts in chairs. It’s quite another to get the kids even remotely interested in paying attention to the curriculum. This sounds like they’re paying the kids to stare dead-eyed into the middle distance for six hours every day.

  41. Mrs. w/1 child says:

    Your tax dollars at work Cincinnati!

  42. Levk says:

    just being at school does not say they will learn anything

  43. prosumer1 says:

    Really? You need to pay off the students to show up to class? This really shows how fucked up our education system is. How about hiring teachers by rewarding them when they make learning effective and fun. How about parents do their job to make sure their kids go to school and actually do their absolute best?