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Tuition Assistance

November 17th, 2013 at 10:21 am

Last week the issue of socio-economic diversity came up at F's school. One of the parents of a girl in F's class made a public comment (in a school-wide meeting) that she works hard for her money (? she doesn't work) and was not in favor of tuition assistance because she was concerned that the level of education would suffer.

I was personally insulted, and pretty upset. We get 15% of our tuition reduced. It is means tested, and I was told that we should apply if we made less than $100k (we were making $70k and now make about $80k). I was thrilled to get some help!

I know there are people that make less than we do, and they get more assistance, but I have no idea who they are, and they don't know who we are. You know why I don't know? Because you can't tell! I mean you can tell who is RICH, really RICH. But aside from that, the kids all dress pretty much the same, and they're all bright (you have to apply to the school). You can't tell by color or race or color whether or not they're on tuition assistance.

And my daughter is at the top of her class academically (and both my husband and I have masters degrees), so I have no idea what this mother was talking about.

Then there is the idea of what is "poor." We have close friends that know we're on tuition assistance; their daughter is also in F's class. Their lifestyle doesn't seem that different from ours, and the husband wants to take another job with a $30k pay cut (yikes!) so his wife was worried about a drastic change in their lifestyle and was curious about tuition assistance.

I told her that the financial guy at school told me to apply if we made less than $100k and she looked disappointed. "Oh, it'll still be way above that." With a $30k pay cut? Wow! I kind of thought they weren't making much more than we were.

Anyway, it just shows you can't tell. Someone may have a nice car that they have a big loan on, or they may have a less expensive car but own it outright. We have a nice house, because I designed and helped build it myself; we owe $80k on it while our friends' $1 million house is fully mortgaged. We have friends that have really expensive clothes, a new Honda Fit and their kids have tons of toys, but they just declared bankruptcy.

So... my message to this mom is "you don't know." And you probably shouldn't go on about things you know nothing about.

I haven't talked to her since the comment (it was last Monday) and probably won't reference it at all. I don't even want to look at her; when I think about her, I just get angry.

1 Responses to “Tuition Assistance”

  1. rob62521 Says:

    I can understand why you feel angry, it appears her comment was actually an insult. There must be more to her story, I think you are wise in avoiding her.

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