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To think people should be a little more appreciative of volunteers entertaining their children

(53 Posts)
FillyPutty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:08:22

We went to look at a Stagecoach school.

£27/week. The owner had his Porsche parked outside in the disabled space (there were plenty of free spaces, I presume this is a Porsche thing that you park in the disabled space not to get your car scratched or something, I don't really know.)

16 children being taught to sing by one teacher.

DS was a member of a non-profit choir previously. There were about 10 children, three qualified volunteer staff and it cost less than £27 for the whole term.

He also does Scouts, again it costs less than £27 for the whole term, they do lots of activities and again several volunteers giving their time without payment.

From what I can see people don't really appreciate or respect the time given by people running these groups, and would rather sign up in droves (apparently Stagecoach are beating people off with a stick) for expensive and inferior profit-making groups.

MrsMushroom Sun 24-Feb-13 23:18:05

Well YABU. Stagecoach is not a choir. Parents sign up because it offers dancing acting AND singing in equal measures.

Now on MN it gets a hard time...but if you ask me, it's great for DC who are a bit showy...many of the schools also have an agency and DC get booked on West End shows...Oliver etc.

How's that comparable to a voluntarily run choir?

Which I am sure is fabulous...if there was one here I would sign my DC up like a shot.

OhLori Sun 24-Feb-13 23:18:44

I can only speak for myself OP but I have a deep respect for people who do volunteer work with children but perhaps you are right about others.

FillyPutty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:22:08

Stagecoach is a commercial service at a commercial price. No problem with that.

What I am saying is that people do not really appreciate when they are getting a (often better than) commercial service for next to nothing, thanks to the efforts of unpaid volunteers.

FillyPutty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:23:55

As an example parents do not engage with the Scout leaders, respond to communications, send their children to meetings with the requested materials, offer their time even once a year to help.

And so on.

MrsMushroom Sun 24-Feb-13 23:24:11

Well you're not clear about the people who don't appreciate the volunteer organisations. All you do int he OP is make snide remarks about the owners Merc.

No mention of specific moments of lack of appreciation for the choir's either about the choir or it's about you being pissed off that Stagecoach is expensive.

aldiwhore Sun 24-Feb-13 23:24:59

I think you made your argument badly. But I think you're saying that you don't have to pay a lot for a really great club experience and we should appreciate our volunteers more?? Well I do. I am a volunteer and I rely on them, I also pay for clubs that are commercial enterprises.

By the way, my best mate has an Audi TT and she parks in disabled spaces because she's disabled.

MrsMushroom Sun 24-Feb-13 23:25:24

x posts with your example

I think you will find people lack communication skills whether they're paying or not....however, there's no point in comparing the two as there's no evidence. It's just your opinion.

serin Sun 24-Feb-13 23:26:42

I was a Guider for over 10years and honestly whilst the kids were great some of the parents were awful. The same few would turn up very late week after week knowing that we would never turn their kids out onto the street, but never imagining that we had children of our own to get home to.

I also hated having to chase parents for subs and was often told that the subs were too high (£1.50). Every week, we the leaders subsidised that group out of our own pockets and spent hidden hours devising games and craft activities not to mention attending courses and filling in insurance forms and the annual census.

So yes I appreciate volunteers and am very grateful to them.

WorraLiberty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:27:32

Well you didn't show much appreciation if you went to look at the Stagecoach school did you?

Or have I missed something? confused

And how do you know the owner of the Porsche didn't need the disabled space?

If he owns the place, he may not have felt it necessary to display his badge?

Pourquoimoi Sun 24-Feb-13 23:28:44

Maybe not the best worded OP but I agree completely with the point you are making. Sometimes people think because it is free/ ultra cheap and run by volunteers that it is not as valuable (in overall terms not necessarily financial).

MrsMushroom Sun 24-Feb-13 23:32:35

I don;t think going to see a Stagecoach is "not showing appreciation"'s not like she's signed to the choir in blood and for life to the exclusion of ALL other groups. hmm

cory Sun 24-Feb-13 23:32:43

Don't quite see the point of your OP tbh. Presumably parents who sign up with Stagecoach do it because they/their children want something different to those who sign up for Scouts or a choir led by volunteers, not because they think the same service magically turns into something better if you pay fees?

And is there any reason to believe that a choir is necessarily better because it is led by 3 teachers rather than one? Surely the qualifications of the teacher are more important than the number of teachers?

In our case, I pay dd's youth theatre fees (not Stagecoach) so she can be trained by professional actors because that is what she happens to want and need. My db pays for professional cello coaching for his son for the same reasons. Of course, if we could get the same job done to the same standard for free we would be delighted.

Besides, do you know how respectful or disrespectful parents are to the leaders of commercial schools? I know dd's school has had problems getting the fees off parents for a start and response to communications is often a problem.

WorraLiberty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:34:46

But MrsM she obviously went there with a view to using the school

So how is she any different to those she's criticising?

ClippedPhoenix Sun 24-Feb-13 23:36:31

Well i wont say what i do but im quite appauled by the shit attitudes to people that look after children full stop. Their children are in the same damn room most of the time and some so badly behaved but it's my fault for not taking control? really?

FillyPutty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:37:07

Worra: DS wants to do drama, which they don't do at choirs.

I don't think Stagecoach franchises own any premises - they rent space from schools, theatres, and so on. Obviously if you did own the premises you would paint 'Reserved: Director' rather than parking in the solitary disabled space with no blue badge.

cory Sun 24-Feb-13 23:39:24

I still don't get the relevance of his Porsche? How do you know he hadn't inherited the money or made it off different business ventures or been given it by his parents? How do you know the children and parents of Stagecoach fawned on him? How do you know he wasn't an excellent director whose local branch was superbly run?

WorraLiberty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:39:59

Ok I'm still confused OP

So they don't do drama at choirs (obviously) therefore (assuming there are no voluntary drama clubs in your area) you looked at Stagecoach.

How does that equate to people not appreciating volunteers?

And no, you wouldn't necessarily obviously paint 'Reserved: Director' on your car parking space if you didn't feel the need.

MrsMushroom Sun 24-Feb-13 23:40:56

Worra what's wrong with her checking it out? She never said she'd choose one above the other!

WorraLiberty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:43:17

Because what's the point in checking anything out if you feel so strongly that volunteer run clubs are going unappreciated?

It smacks of do as I say and not as I do.

cory Sun 24-Feb-13 23:46:17

What is the point of judging the place from the make of the director's car?

What is the point of assuming it is inferior because there is one teacher rather than three?

What is the point of assuming that Scouts or choir would do just as well for any child when they clearly offer different things?

This OP is an example of Muddled Thinking. She turns up at the school because her dd has asked her too, catches sight of the director's car, feels disgruntled because he can afford an expensive car (and she can't) and then decides his school can't be much good.

WorraLiberty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:50:38

Exactly cory

It's as though the OP is bitter at the fact the school costs £27 per week and she can't afford that (fair enough I couldn't either)

But the car and the fact volunteers aren't appreciated enough, is just confusing.

So if the owner drove a second hand Ford and the school charged a fiver a week...would that change her claim that volunteers aren't appreciated enough? confused

FillyPutty Sun 24-Feb-13 23:54:27

cory: I am not saying that people fawn on him or treat him any better than the volunteers at Scouts or choirs or whatever.

My point was that I don't think most people have any idea of the true commercial cost of groups that their children attend for nominal sums, and that while by my reckoning you could certainly fund a Porsche out of running Stagecoach on a Saturday (presumably working the rest of the week for your normal income), the people running Scouts and the like are not making a penny, and are indeed very clearly often forced to subsidise activities out of their own pockets.

There is nothing wrong with making money out of a business of course (although parking your Porsche in the disabled space and blocking my way to the bike sheds did rather grate) but when you purchase a service on a commercial basis then it is usual for instance that people might not pay their fees on time, and so on. For example, managing cashflow is a normal part of running a business, but it should NOT be something that volunteers have to nag people for.

cory Sun 24-Feb-13 23:55:33

When I was a teen I desperately wanted to take up riding again. We couldn't afford it. Fair enough. If my mother had suggested that my insistence on wanting to do riding instead of playing football was due to the fact that I just didn't appreciate work done by volunteers, I would have had serious words. Sour grapes are silly.

cory Sun 24-Feb-13 23:59:29

But you did say in your post - and I am quoting verbatim that people "would rather sign up in droves (apparently Stagecoach are beating people off with a stick) for expensive and inferior profit-making groups"

so where is your evidence that Stagecoach do provide an inferior service to your Scout group?

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