I have been waiting for a while to be able to get an XBox One system. Last Friday (December 26), I finally got a gift that allowed me to purchase one. I have been searching the ads online and Craigslist trying to get a good deal without breaking the bank.
On Friday night, I finally found a deal at Target so I checked the website which showed that my local store in High Point had it in stock. I drove over only to find they were not in stock. The associate there called to the closest Greensboro store in Bridford Parkway and asked them to hold the only one left. I immediately drove over to get my prize.
Now here is where the problem begins. The online listing showed that the system comes with a $50 gift card. It was not clearly marked that you have to order this online in order to get the $50 credit. The electronics associate at the Bridford store takes me up to the “Customer Service” desk so that they can handle this sale. Since it was not showing on the register, he didn’t feel that he was able to override the register to make this sale complete.
I stood in line waiting for my turn. I indicated that I was trying to take advantage of the $50 gift card promotion and then I was told that it was only available for online purchases. OK, fine, they showed me the fine print where it shows the policy on the purchase. Fine…I’ll log on with my phone and you can process it right here for in-store pickup.
Here is where it really goes sideways. The website tells me that the item is not available at the store! So, now I am in a catch-22 situation. I have to buy it online, your website won’t let me buy it online, and you have one in hand right here, and I have the means to buy the item! What’s wrong with this picture? The manager tries to pass off a 10% discount on the system ($35.00) as a viable substitute for the $50 gift card!
After explaining to the manager the situation, she still would not make it right and provide the $50 gift card.
I walked out of the store after expressing my distaste for the shopping experience and drove across the street to Best Buy near Stanley Road. Alan was able to quickly provide the same deal and instead of having to wait for a gift card to be emailed to me, I walked out of the store with the gift card in hand. Target should take a lesson from Best Buy in how to create a positive shopping experience for their customers.
Yesterday, I was fortunate to be able to visit with my daughter’s kindergarten class. Haynes-Inman Education Center is a school for children with various special needs. The teachers there provide various therapies to help these children overcome some of their disabilities.
On Monday, they were having “Leaf Day” in her classroom. The teacher brings in leaves for the kids to play in. While this might sound trivial to some, these kids are not usually able to go outside and play in the leaves like typical kids do. Some kids have sensory issues where they are unable to handle a new feeling, for example, even the feeling of a dry leaf being crumbled in their hands. While this is not necessarily the case of this day, these types of interactions help these kids to better relate to their surroundings and this is just one example of how they help these kids to learn and explore their surroundings.
As I mentioned earlier, my daughter is one of the students seen in these pictures. Raising a child with special needs can be quite demanding. Before the kids were introduced to the leaves, I was able to sit and observe the daily happenings in the classroom; things I am not normally able to observe. I saw as the staff move swiftly from one child to another – one child needing medication at a specific time, another trying to transition after mom left, still another needing to eat breakfast. The entire time seeming to have an unending amount of patience. Even though it doesn’t show, I know it is hard to do…I have three children at home.
I think that is what makes this place, and others like it, so special and also why my daughter loves so much to go there. The teachers, assistants, and therapists all care deeply about the success of these children – even if that success is simply being able to choose between two objects on any given day or watching a child take his or her first steps on their own after years of therapy.
I hope you enjoy seeing the pictures of these children as much as I enjoyed spending the time to take them, and as much as they enjoyed experiencing something new.
No-Zero Grading Policy
Picture yourself in an ambulance being rushed to the hospital. Maybe you are having a heart attack. You arrive at the hospital and the doctors start to work on you. As the paramedics relay to the doctor your condition, you hear the doctor order an antacid for your treatment…an antacid. As you are taking your last breath, you hear the doctor say, “Whoops!!! I failed…can I get a do over?” The heart monitor begins the steady whine signaling your passing.
During Superbowl 46, the Giants and the Patriots fought seemingly relentlessly for the title of champion. As the final moments played out, it seems that the Giants are going to win. The Patriots miss their last chance at a goal. As the Giants begin the wild celebration, the announcer comes across the PA system and state, “May I have your attention, please! Due to the hard work of the Patriots this year, the NFL judges have determined that they also shall share the victory this year! Please help us in congratulating the co-winners of Superbowl 46!”
I figure you are thinking to yourself that these are ridiculous scenarios. They are. I can’t imagine anyone wanting an ER doctor who is not at the top of his game. I also cannot imagine the chaos and outrage that would occur if the title of champion was diluted for the Giants. People tend to work harder when they know they have a limited chance to get it right.
While I agree that students should have every opportunity to learn concepts, I believe they need a level of achievement to strive for…for excellence. Allowing students to continue to retake exams or redo work just to try to get them a better grade to make the school look better is not helping the student later in life. An ER doc does not usually get a second chance to save a life. I want to know (or at least believe) that the doctor who is making split second decisions about my care excelled in his/her studies. I want to believe that the doctor has the drive to make himself better and not be satisfied with just completing medical school. Yes, my doctor might make a mistake…doctors are human…but that doctor also knows there are consequences for not excelling at their practice.
Likewise these students need to know that they must drive themselves to be better. They need to know that it is OK to fail…as long as they get up and try again. There are also students, though, that do not do the work. The policy from the school system above prevents teachers from issuing a “0” to a student for not completing an assignment. That student receives an “I.” According to this policy, a student that refuses to do assignments gets a minimum score of 60. That tells a student that they can skate through the class and still make a recoverable grade…without doing the work the other students are doing. How is this fair to the students who bust their rear trying to get it done. This policy cheapens the work of those students who do work hard and also sets unrealistic expectations for when the student gets into the work force.
I believe it is a huge mistake for school systems to adopt these types of policies.