A week or so ago I was getting something out of one of my cabinets when I noticed a 3x5 card that I had taped to the cabinet several years ago. Taped to the card was a nickel and four pennies with the words "NINE CENTS.” Below it is a question: “What’s this?” In very small print in a corner is written, “Your cost per minute at LCS!” I put it there for the 6th graders I was teaching at the time as a reminder of how much I valued their time with me. I had it there for me as a reminder of the expense to parents. That was three years ago.
I did the math again and found the expense to parents is around thirteen cents a minute this year. The expense to parents for a forty-minute class would be $5.20 per child. The expense of 24 students about $125.00. Interesting numbers to say the least.
It’s hard to believe that a budget of $10.5 million boils down to thirteen cents a minute per student.
How do I see it?
I have a grandchild at LCS and feel the “expense” in helping her be here. But as a faculty member, I see this expense as a “value.” I value seeing how Christian schooling is shaping her life. The word value is not to mean value as a “good deal,” but a result of where my affections lie. Expenses for anything can give us all angst, but if we value the expense, we can experience a peaceful, easy feeling. One of contentment. One of peace.
To shift our thinking of tuition as an "expense" to a "value" may be a challenge. I am sure I am not the only one who worries about how to make ends meet. However, I am comforted in how Luke sums Jesus’s discourse on worry with “Where your treasure is, there will be your heart also.” That is so freeing!
LCS is in the midst of communicating the new strategic plan initiatives to parents and faculty. It is a very exciting time! “Always Better”, the Strategic Plan initiatives for LCS, has been developed by a task force earlier this year. The plan outlines the school’s priorities in broad categories of spiritual formation, instructional innovation, facilities, and financial stability.
I love the “Always Better” theme…it is what we value. Perhaps this puts the thirteen cents a minute expense in the different perspective, one of value.
Today (Wednesday) I had fourth grade in the WR making straw rockets to demonstrate Newton’s third law of motion. The class I have after lunch is particularly challenging only for the reason it’s after lunch and it is 1:30PM. What happened today was amazing…at least four students made it a point of thanking me and telling me how cool it was.
Hmmmmm…that was “value!”
Mr. Fred Wiechmann serves as a Science Resource Teacher for LCS. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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