The cluelessness. That's what makes me chuckle the most. The sheer and utter cluelessness of the people with whom I usually work. Not my co-workers, although they are all capable of moments of cluelessness (I'll confess, I'm probably the worst). I mean the people outside the office.
Earlier this week SSG Rage and I had a meeting with the senior assistant principal of one of our local high schools. This was a meeting that was called by the school to discuss their rules regarding recruiting activities. A perfectly reasonable request. One SSG Rage and I were happy to attend. Well, I wouldn't say happy. More like not violently angered. But still it was a reasonable meeting. At least we thought it would be, but then the school had to get stupid. They were the ones who had called the meeting. They. Them. They were the ones. It was their idea. The next day I got a call from their secretary saying that they wouldn't be able to make the appointment because they didn't know they had another commitment.
Anyway, meeting delayed for a week. Week's up and Rage and I are off. This school is one of the worst in the state. They do poorly on the state standardized testing. Poor graduation rates, few students go on to college. Whole nine yards of bad education stories. This high school is what makes people call for the public education system to be torn down. In a sane world the administrators of this school would be begging the military to come in and give their students a chance at a future that didn't involve jail, serving fries, or some other less-than-awesome life. As I'm constantly reminded though this is not a sane world.
Anyway. To the meeting. Army, USAR, National Guard, Marines, and the Navy show up. Air Force blows them off. That should have been their first hint. This school cannot produce an Alpha, and the AF just doesn't seem to be interested in the Bravo/ Cat IV Factory that this school represents. As the meeting started I wished I had that option.
There are two things which will make it tolerable for me to sit through a meeting. One is that it's a useful meeting where important information is discussed. Yeah. Not going to happen. The other is food. Ply me with bagels, donuts, or cocktail shrimp and I'll sit through just about anything. Yeah. No food either.
So there I was, sitting next to SSG Rage who is a human anger machine, and listening as the assistant principal explained why the school didn't conduct an ASVAB. The previous year they'd conducted the ASVAB and had gotten complaints from some parents that the three hours devoted to the ASVAB were going to make their students fail. If three hours out of an entire school year are the difference between D and F... well... sorry Mr. and Mrs. Parent-of-a-Dumbass, but your kid is doomed. I refuse to believe that there isn't three hours of jacking-around time spread through the entire year that could be better served having their kids take the ASVAB. This school has like 12 half days. I'm going to make a stupid observation that going to 11 half days and having the ASVAB might be in the child's best interest.
During the meeting it was brought up to the head counselor that the time for students to apply for a ROTC scholarship was approaching. Now, these are wicked awesome scholarships. It's basically an 80-100,000 dollar scholarship followed by sering as a commissioned officer. They are hard to get. You need excellent grades, SAT/ACT scores, demonstrated leadership in community and school organizations, and athletic accomplishment. The counselor couldn't think of anyone who could meet the minimum SAT score of 1050 on Math and Verbal (ROTC isn't considering the written portion of the test right now). In a school with several hundred juniors and seniors they can't produce one, 1, uno, un, ONE freaking student who can meet the MINIMUM requirements for one of the best scholarships available. Pathetic.
My suggestion for this facility is as follows:
Wrecking ball the standing structures.
Plow the remains into the dirt.
Salt the earth.
Put a drop-out's head on a pike as a warning to others.
It's going to be a bad day tomorrow so I'm getting the bitter out of my system now.
Everyone have a good weekend.