Sometimes good intentions can end in massive controversy. Who was going to tell a Sioux Falls (South Dakota) mortgage bank that when they devised a competition for ten teachers to raise money for their classes, the initiative was going to explode in their faces. Last Saturday, during the break from a game where the local hockey team, Sioux Falls Stampede, was playing, a contest called Dash for Cash (which can be translated as “get all the money you can”) was launched. For five minutes, ten teachers had to kneel on a mat—we assume to avoid the cold, wet ice—and grab as many dollar bills as possible. On the frozen pitch, the mortgage bank deposited, in the form of a donation, $5,000.
When time began to run, the ten teachers, who were equipped with hockey helmets, crawled to where the green dollar bills were and began to insert them where they could: pockets, shirts, shirts, sleeves, even in a woolen hat that the participant came out of nowhere … In the meantime, the audience cheered exclaimed. As often happens in the age of social networks, a video of such a dubious spectacle went viral: early Monday morning it was watched by nearly 8 million people on Twitter.
Terrible, inhuman, miserable. Critics have phrased the initiative in harsh terms and compared it to a violent TV series in South Korea. squid game, where the characters risk their lives for a handful of money. Twitter is still burning. The controversy is growing. Especially when the numbers are starting to come in and South Dakota teachers are among the worst paid teachers in the entire United States, they are only surpassed in Mississippi.
The newspaper interviewed him Washington PostSenator Reynolds Nessba declared that despite the fact that the competition was born out of good will, what happened ended up spreading. Poor picture. “Teachers should never have to go through something similar in order to get the materials needed for their students, whether in Sioux Falls or elsewhere in the United States.”
According to the National Education Association (NEA), South Dakota teachers in the 2019-2020 fiscal year earned a salary of approximately $49,000. In terms of money spent per student, the state ranks 38th, spending about $11,000 per student. The average salary in the US is $64,000 and the average amount for pupils is more than $13,500.
When the five minutes of time was up, Barry Longden, a high school teacher, had raised $616, which he intended to invest in a student sports program. Then came Alexandria Kuiper, an 11-year-old teacher who wanted money to decorate her classroom. The smallest amount stored was $380. Other teachers talked about acquiring technology equipment or school supplies such as tables and chairs.
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