Teacher Sells Ad Space on Tests
Faced with increased supply costs and decreased budgets, teacher Tom Farber of San Diego was forced to think outside the box. Outside his box, the world was covered in ad space. He now sells ad space on his math tests and quizzes, to help offset the cost of having them printed.
Schools across the country are facing severe budget crises. Programs are cut or students are forced to come up with an often out of reach sum of money to participate. Bake sales and car washes don't cover the gap any longer, and students are paying the cost.
"I would have never have done this five years ago or ten years ago," Farber says. "I wouldn't even have thought of it because there was never a necessity."
But it is a necessity now, because San Diego area schools are facing a $51 million budget shortfall next year. Statewide, California schools are expecting at least $2.8 billion in cuts-and that number could grow to more than $7 billion.
At $10 dollars for a quiz, $20 for a test, and $30 for a final exam, Farber's ads don't pay for much- just the cost of printing the tests.
"I think this is one in the same time a story of American ingenuity and a story of American tragedy," says Arnold Fege of the Public Education Network.
Advertising in schools is not a new idea. Students have been knowingly using branded pencils, notebooks and clothing for as long as we can remember, but one may wonder at the effectiveness of this new idea. Will a student who associates a product with a math test really run out to buy it?
Soon perhaps schools will begin targeting the parents. The next time you see your child's report card, don't be surprised if you also see an ad for braces, ballet lessons or videogames.
Most Recommended Comment
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada