Saturday, November 15


Gina Arlotto - My 7th grade son attends Stuart Hobson MS, which is participating in the Capital Gains program. Even though we had serious concerns about this program, we decided to let him participate. All of his money will go into a savings account for college and he can also donate a portion of the money to a charity of his choosing. We've now received a few checks (each between $70 and $90), and it's pretty unorganized.

I actually don't know how this can actually be used as a legitimate research study. For example, even though we do not have a uniform, the kids are still graded on uniform. For the last check no 7th grade kids were given money for grades, only uniform, attendance and behavior were counted. Then the other night we got a robo call informing us that since the Stuart Hobson kids are getting the highest checks in the city, the "Capital Gains team" decided that they had set the standards too low for Stuart kids and starting with this next check, they would have a different, higher, standard to meet.

We weren't told what the new rubric would be, and actually, we've never known what the old one was, beyond the general: As get more points that Bs and Cs. My son told me that they were told in class that Stuart doesn't have as many discipline issues and the kids are "too smart" and that they were getting too much in their checks and so they had to change it. What this is teaching my child is that you can work hard, dress nicely, and behave well and it's not enough-and if you are too good or too smart, you will be penalized. It's pretty unbelievable.

In addition, if you don't open a Suntrust account, you will not get a check. It is all direct deposit-no paper checks anymore, although at the beginning of the year, we were told you could have a paper check or direct deposit to a Suntrust account only. In addition, if you make more than two transactions a month, your child will be charged $4 for every subsequent transaction, which is pretty high, it seems to me.


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