Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Year's End - Reflections

And in the end, we couldn't get the school to write a cheque for our $531.60, too late,  so Jasna and I spent Tuesday afternoon in the last week of school going to the local shopping mall to find a way to do a money order and post it. I'd decided it was going to go registered mail, to avoid being lost in the Christmas rush. The kids put months of work into this and deserved to have every last penny reach its destination. The PO wouldn't take our huge number of coins (all but $94 was in coins!) and I suppose I can't blame them, so we went to the local NAB to see if they'd change our coins to notes. "Do you bank with us?" asked the teller. No, we didn't, so she told us they couldn't help us. 

There was a Commonwealth bank across the road and I do have an account there, so we tramped over there with our heavy bags of money. There, we met a helpful bank officer who took us to a money-counting machine where you could have the fun of throwing coins into a hole and watching the machine count it all up for you (it spat out a New Zealand ten-cent coin!). Then you take the printout to the counter, where they can put it into your account or give you notes. Of course, we took the notes back across the road and bought a money order. The lady at the counter had an arm injury which she discussed with Jasna while making up the money order for Greenpeace.

We posted it and, much relieved, went for a nice cuppa in the food court before returning to school.

It was a good project - a grand project. The kids believed in it and nobody was reluctant to have a go. Well, almost nobody. One student - like last year - did absolutely nothing. I suspect that, like last year's student, he regrets it. He was not a part of the final celebration, though he was there. I told him quietly that he had let his team down, which meant something to him, as he's a passionate sportsman. He protested, "But I wasn't there!" Exactly. And it wasn't illness.

Everyone else at the very least had a go. If their project didn't work, they were only too happy to try something else.

I don't think we'll do a lolly jar next year, it just hasn't worked, two years in a row. Truffles did, though. Everyone likes chocolate and they had a lot of demand for it - they did it twice. It has to be given to reliable students, though, perhaps as an alternative to making cookies, which cost money for ingredients - MUCH more than truffles - and then you have to spend the whole day baking and distributing them.

We'll see the calibre of the students we have next year before I recommend anything in particular.