A masterclass in bribery: pay your school kids


If we are serious about helping poor children to get better grades, perhaps we should ditch our hang-ups and try cash incentives. [!!!!!!!]
[This is capitalism at its best.....]

If you get to the end of this article, I'll give you £5. Actually, I won't give just anyone £5 - only if you're poor and uneducated, because I think you lot need a bribe to do something worthy.

Insulting? Yes. Effective? Maybe. A radical approach to poverty that is sweeping American primary schools and health clinics? Yes. A missed trick for Britain? Certainly.

This week the scores of England's primary schools were revealed, showing that a quarter of children leave them without mastering the basics in English and maths - mostly those from poorer families. No one is quite sure what to do about it. More than a decade of laudable investment in teachers, and endless fiddling with the curriculum hasn't helped those kids, who now have little hope of catching up.

The most pioneering American economists would take one look and offer a simple solution: pay kids for doing well. At least seven major pilot schemes have started in the past two years, on thousands of young children in the poorest parts of Washington, New York, Chicago, and Dallas. In another big pilot study in New York, the Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, is paying thousands of poor women to be better mothers.


[But this came out on MSNBC in April 2007...]

Parents Buying Off Kids For Good Behavior.


Experts caution against bribery, urge rewards that make sense. [So, who's right?]


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