Income Brackets /Compliance/Compassion/Concern/ Other Moral Ethical

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 3:26am
MommaBear's picture
Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00


What is the income bracket of the school your PA (or NUTS) child attends?

Are there several income brackets?

Do you feel a difference between compliance/compassion/concern/other moral ethical between or within the brackets related to PA (or NUTS)?

Ie: [i]Does it make a difference[/i]? Is ?income? a determinating factor?

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 4:27am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Hi MommaBear.
As you know, my son is not pa - but his school is peanut free, so I hope you don't mind me answering too. [img][/img]
We moved a little over a year ago, and we are in a neighbourhood where the average income is much higher. The public school here is peanut free and seems (to me) to be very allergy aware. i.e. they were prepared for a child with insect allergies before my son started school, they are prepared for a child with latex allergy, and for children with other food allergies.
Our previous neighbourhood (much lower average income) both the public and catholic school were peanut free as were both of the day-care centres. I hadn't been involved with the public school for a few years (it was not peanut free when my children attended), but I was babysitting a child in the catholic school. As I said, it was peanut free, but they didn't seem to be aware that any other allergy could be fatal.
My son's current school encourages the child to be educated about their own allergy and to carry the epi-pen - even if they are not able to use it themselves. I'm not sure about the schools in my previous neighbourhood.
Don't know if any of this helps you at all.

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 6:05am
Gail W's picture
Joined: 12/06/2001 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by MommaBear:
[b] [img][/img]
What is the income bracket of the school your PA (or NUTS) child attends?
Are there several income brackets? [/b]
The income bracket of the [i]families [/i]attending is very wide... There are many families whose household income exceeds $300K per year and other families who are on assistance.
I keep up on statistics re our school district and I know that in the entire metro area our district is near the very top (first or second) in per capita sending~ between $10,500 and $11K per student. (We are also at the top in teacher salary.)
[i](Aside: St. Louis is a bit unique in that private and parochial schools are huge. For example, 2/3 of the kids on my street do not attend our neighborhood public school. So there are many taxpayers supporting our public schools who don't use them... keeping enrollment low.)[/i]
Quote from Mommabear:
Quote:[b]Do you feel a difference between compliance/compassion/concern/other moral ethical between or within the brackets related to PA (or NUTS)?
Ie: [i]Does it make a difference[/i]? Is ?income? a determinating factor?[/b]
I need to think on this one... It seems to me that compliance/compassion/concern/etc might be more related to education than income... And I suppose level of education is tied to income [i]to an extent[/i].

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 6:31am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Momma Bear, you got this question from something I posted to-day, I know it! [img][/img]
(Now, if I could only remember which thread I posted it in [img][/img] )
In my experience only, which is always the case when I post here anyway, I think I can comment on this to a degree but only to do with the particular town I live in (obviously) and certainly not with regard to all peoples of all income levels.
The people that I have found most compassionate and caring about my PA son, when presented with a "peanut free" classroom have, in fact, been parents whose incomes would be considered low. Not sure of their educational levels.
Same as in the last town I lived in. More compassion and caring from people who didn't have a lot of money.
Now, of course, this is a generalization about income brackets and I don't mean it to be. I'm just talking about my experience.
Last year, in the other school, with the Year from He**, the Mother that finally called the school board to complain about her daughter not being able to eat peanut products was a Mom that worked outside of the home and although a lot of low income people do not wear poverty on their sleeves, you could definitely tell that this Mom was not struggling (outwardly) financially.
The young woman that came to my house to find out what the he** to pack in her daughter's lunch after being given such mixed messages by my son's teacher, was what would be considered low income.
This year, and I've sorta sensed it since the beginning of the school year, but didn't really have it confirmed until Jesse's birthday party on Saturday, both children are in a school where most of the students' parents' have "comfortable" incomes. This now explains to me why we're a "drive through" school with most of the children being driven to school and picked up after school.
There is, apparently, a moneyed cliche within the school and they control Parent Council and the principal as well (I can see why that man would feel the need to fit in and not disturb the status quo).
And yes, it is at this school that I have met with the most resistance to my son's PA and less compassion.
When we moved to this town two years ago, my children attended what was considered the *downtown* school. I've posted about it here and how the children looked like a motley crew. But, again, that was the school that had the best school programs for during school hours and also the school that dealt with Jesse's PA with relative ease. I didn't have a Year from He** and can only recall a couple of very minor incidents from that year.
And, I would have to say, that the vast majority of the parents there were in the low income bracket. They could very easily have come up with the low income = pbj sandwich argument and didn't. They were compassionate and caring, as was the staff.
The Mother and her daughter who spoke up for Jesse with the other Mom at the school that I heard about on Saturday, they would also be considered low income (I really don't like labels like that).
Does a higher income make people forget or never realize that "but there for the grace of God, go I?"
Now, as I said repeatedly, I believe, this has only been my own experience in the two different towns I've lived in. And if you look at this very board's membership, you'll find that high income people are compassionate, caring and considerate.
Now I have to find the thread where I posted that. [img][/img]
Best wishes! [img][/img]

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 6:39am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Gail W., sorry, do disagree with this:-
It seems to me that compliance/compassion/concern/etc might be more related to education than income... And I suppose level of education is tied to income to an extent.
I understand what you're saying, and just as with the income debate, it would be broadstroking/generalizing to say a person of this income level will be more compassionate than one of this, as it would be to say a university educated person would be more compassionate than a high school drop-out.
Also, understanding that *perhaps* income and education are inter-related (note, my own personal *perhaps*), I've also found that the parents that I have dealt with on a personal level re PA, that wanted to learn more about PA and were willing to educate themselves re my son's PA so that they could either be friends with me or their children could be friends with my son, or in the same classroom, would be people that did not have "higher" education.
No, I think compassion and caring come from some other place than one's wallet or one's degree on the wall. I really do. It comes from goodness of heart that is not instilled by paying your child or the formal education your child receives. It comes from teaching your child to be a *good* and caring person and then them becoming *good* and caring adults.
Best wishes! [img][/img]

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 8:54am
Going Nuts's picture
Joined: 10/04/2001 - 09:00

I see two different sides to this question.
On the part of the parents, I think there are both self-involved and compassionate people in every income bracket. However, I think people in lower income brackets probably have the edge on compassion, due to the number of difficulties of their own. Momma Bear, since you've worked for tips (as have I) - who are the biggest tippers? In my experience, it's not the ones with the fattest wallets!
As for the schools, I think schools in higher income areas are more responsive. First of all, they tend to be better equipped to handle whatever is presented to them (more staff, more resources, etc.). They are also used to answering to a more vocal parent body, that is probably savvier in terms of knowing how to "work the system".
In my own current situation, our school is in a community that is mostly higher income, with about 12% of the students living below the poverty line. Very few are like us, in the middle. I've met parents with an astonishing lack of compassion (all quite wealthy, BTW), but the school has been behind me all the way. A factor I can't ignore here is a fabulous district superintendent, who unfortunately will be retiring this year. He really sets the tone for the whole district.
Any more thoughts?

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 10:57am
momma2boys's picture
Joined: 03/14/2003 - 09:00

Mommabear, in our school, to give you an idea of the income level, at last check, 90% of the families qualified for free or reduced breakfast and lunches. Most of them are on public assistance and receive food stamps.
The other ten percent are probably where we are, middle income, making ends meet , saving a little, but thats about it.
About 50 - 60 % of those parents quite honestly dont even give a sh** about their own kids, much less mine. Their kids arent even allowed to wake them up in the morning. They get up on their own and get ready and leave on their own. The parents dont help them with homework, come in to conferences, volunteer, sell for fundraisers, nothing.
We have 3 parents on PTO. Out of 180 kids we had 45 sell for our last fundraiser. If we did nothing for the kids, such as parties and field trips, they wouldnt care. And most of them dont even work, so why wouldnt you volunteer?
A high number of them dont speak English either, so you can guess about compliance. The only concern I've been shown is from staff and faculty, and the other 2 PTO parents. There have been complaints to the nurse as well. One even complained that first they couldnt smoke in a restaurant, and now they cant send pb to school for a snack?!!!
It just makes me sick to see how most of these kids live. So I really expect no concern for my child from them.

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 11:28am
Nomad Woman's picture
Joined: 10/09/2003 - 09:00

Damn, UserName #2 just blipped out as far as my keyboard is concerned right now, so I'll post under this one. [img][/img]
Going Nuts, I really liked this part of your post:-
On the part of the parents, I think there are both self-involved and compassionate people in every income bracket. However, I think people in lower income brackets probably have the edge on compassion, due to the number of difficulties of their own.
momma2boys, I do hear what you're saying and I have certainly seen some of what you're talking about. I do live in a relatively small city so I don't see as much as I would say if I lived in Toronto. But I did see the crack addict walking her children to school every morning late at one of my children's schools here (the *downtown* school).
Certainly, if you have parents who are up drinking and drugging all night and the children are responsible for themselves, it's going to be very difficult to have their parents concerned about your PA child. And I also believe it's going to be pretty difficult for the children to care about your child when they're so neglected themselves.
Having said that, there is the thing whereby all people living in poverty are not alcoholics, drug addicts, or welfare bums. And certainly it sounds as though a *good* portion of your school's community needs to be reported to the Child Service's Department.
Poverty can, at times, touch the most educated of us, for various reasons.
Last year, as you know, I ran the breakfast program at my children's school. I did see a couple of children come in whose parents really didn't seem to care about them (there was the one who had been living in a car [img][/img] ), but for the most part I saw children whose parents simply couldn't provide them with a decent breakfast because they didn't have the money.
No, if you don't care about your own children, you're certainly not going to care about my son and the fact that he could drop dead in your child's classroom.
But I think, in general, and I'm not sure, since this has proven to be an excellent thought provoking discussion Momma Bear, it's really looking at whether or not children and parents have compassion and caring because they have money or they don't have money.
And we certainly can't do it in broad strokes. As I say, most members here, probably 99.9% of them would not be considered low income and yet there is compassion, caring, encouragement and concern here for the well being of MY PA child, along with every other members' PA child.
As I said, I could only post from my experience only as to whether or not I felt income played a role in how PA was dealt with at my son's school.
Right now, I'd have to say that yes, I have moved into a higher income district (although you wouldn't know it from me since I live in the barn house), but because the powers that be in the school are from the well established, never going to move out of the area, monied (spelled it wrong the last time) part of the school community, it is going to be harder for my voice to be heard. Especially when the principal is listening to them and their concerns.
The Mom I spoke with on Saturday. She had some concerns she wanted to address with the principal and he basically dismissed her because she was a young Mom (I don't know how old she is) and I also suspect because he knows she's not in the high income bracket.
Bottom line though is, just as with the principal of Jesse's school, the first a**hole principal I've come across in five years, there are good and bad in every income bracket in the world.
I just posted my experience. Also, I think if you check out my positive experiences thread also under Living with PA, the people that I posted about there were also people that would be considered either low income or making ends meet middle class.
Oh, and yes, the school that I posted about where my kids went their first year here, that was the most compassionate, as far as administration, Jesse's teacher, and his classmates, there were a good number of those children that looked as though they had to get themselves up and off to school themselves. They also have the oldest breakfast program in this town, over twenty years. I remember one boy in particular, Jesse started asking me if he could walk home on his own and I said he couldn't because I felt he was too young then and in a new town. That little guy walked himself to and from school every day and I don't think I ever saw a parent with him.
I also remember aside from saying that the children looked like a motley crew, that there were a good number of the Fathers there to pick up their children who you could tell had some kind of difficulty (if you will), be it drugs or alcohol. But again, low income doesn't always mean addiction.
However, having said all of that, momma2boys, I really think what you had to say was important. If a parent (of any income bracket) doesn't give a toss about their own child, how can we expect them to give a whit about ours?
Great question, Momma Bear. I'm so glad I made you think of it! [img][/img]
Best wishes! [img][/img]

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 11:36am
MommaBear's picture
Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by Going Nuts:
[b] Momma Bear, since you've worked for tips (as have I) - who are the biggest tippers? [/b]
Popping in to answer one of the few questions I really have an answer for.
Based on my *own* experience only...........
although I could really pull a great tip off a bunch of GNO women in a heartbeat if I set my mind to it. In General, I thought I recieved pretty good tips...... all the way around. [img][/img]
Wait............. would that mean that [i]both[/i] sides have much to do with the size of the tip? [img][/img]
Of course, there were always rotten tippers. Never really noticed the size of their wallets, but I *do* know we took turns waiting on them. [img][/img] Just made me work harder for the great ones. Lemons, Lemonaide.
I am so glad you decided to post. I Shoulda reworded my question. [img][/img]
edit to add: a great thanks to everyone's response(s) thus far. [img][/img]
[This message has been edited by MommaBear (edited December 08, 2003).]

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 12:28pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Seems I read the question a little differently than others. (I'm glad I didn't throw you all off though [img][/img] )
I was thinking in terms of the [i]schools[/i] compassion and concern more than the other parents. In that respect I think there is a difference.
As an example, when I was having problems with my oldest in school (ld) they didn't want to "invest the money to help a child who will move away so quickly". This comment was made because I lived in an apartment building instead of a house. I lived in the same apartment for 20 years. If my child's problem had been pa would that same principal have wanted to make major changes in her school for him? At that time -- I doubt it. We were considered *transient* because we were in an apartment. If we had been on any type of financial assistance (not sure if schools need to know about that) I think she would have been even less likely to help.
Many times (not always) parents with low incomes have less education, and sometimes (not always) less self-confidence. That combination makes it very difficult to argue with a school principal who is not inclined to help with your situation.
[i]I apologize if my generalizations have offended anyone. That is not my intent.[/i]

Posted on: Mon, 12/08/2003 - 12:45pm
MommaBear's picture
Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00

Quote:Originally posted by AnnaMarie:
[b]Seems I read the question a little differently than others. (I'm glad I didn't throw you all off though [img][/img] )
I was thinking in terms of the [i]schools[/i] compassion and concern more than the other parents. [/i][/b]
I am absolutely looking for [i]both[/i] sides of the coin. (pardon the income pun). [img][/img]
PS. What you shared regarding a school possibly not wanting to invest money/time into a child not destined to be in that particular system long (pps..... are they fortune tellers??) reminded me of a letter I recieved from an attorney representing a school district that in so many words indicated District wide menu alterations would not be a "productive" use of time if I intended to continue homeschooling.



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