Friday, July 15, 2011


The other day Miss Q and I were hanging out with some of my oldest friends. Not that they’re old. They’re my age. We’re young. I mean that I’ve known them for a long time. Since high school. We’ve been friends for over twenty years.

Friendships that long mean all the barriers are down. Nobody wears makeup, honesty and truth – however they present – are the basis for discussion and that discussion is open to anything – from the sex-education class we had from the crazy art teacher who made us put a condom on a banana, to our daily need for our friend the carbohydrate, why we didn’t get tickets to see Lady Gaga and where to send our kids to school.

One of these friends (the mother of three fabulous humans) has already put her girls down for an exclusive private school that will set her and her partner back a cool $25 000 per year. Per child.
And that doesn’t include uniform, hockey gear, the harp, still-portrait lessons or anything else their girls decide to do.

‘That’s $75 000 we’re going to be paying each year. And that’s after tax,’ she says to me nonchalantly.
Is it? I wouldn’t know. I’ve never earned $75 000 a year.
So the concept of spending more than I’ve ever earned on Miss Q’s education is a little out of my realm of comprehension.

Most people’s salaries are like monopoly money to me. It just doesn’t seem real.

‘Are they seriously getting paid that much money?’ I question our other friend.
‘Nome, you have no concept of how much money there is out there. Some people, merchant bankers for example, may have bonuses of over a million dollars.’

Over a million dollars?

What does that mean? It’s ridiculous. How can you need that much money?

Oh wait, I know. 
Because if you have a prayer of owning your own house in Sydney and you want that house to be in a desirable area where nobody sends their kids to a public school because they want them mixing with the Hugo’s and Bella’s of the world, so the public school gets all the riff-raff and you want better for your child, you need that million dollars.
And then some.

What on earth are we going to do with Miss Q? 

Then again, she's only eight months old.
Perhaps by the time she's twelve I'll be a bestselling novelist and singing up a storm.
That ought to get me seventy-five-grand a year oughtn't it?

Or...we could improve the state of our public schools so that they are acceptable to all socioeconomic sectors, thereby producing an accurate portrayal of the world our kids are going to mix in once they're out of school anyway.

I know, I know, tell her she's dreaming.


  1. I know Nome that I work in the Catholic Schools and so I am not really an authority to comment, but I think you will find that the public school system in Australia is exceptional compared to most other countries in the world. I don't think the darling Miss Q will be missing out on too much Educational Foundation if you choose to send her too a public school. Sure she may not get all the trimmings like a 1000 dollar uniform, ipad in every school bag or fencing classes, but the teachers working in the private and state school classrooms are all trained in the same universities and it is the quality of teaching that is going to impact Miss Q most, not the quality of their parents bank account!

    That's what I think, for what it's worth anyway! I should also probably declare by other bias, I was educated at a Sydney school, similar to the one your friend will send her three children too!

    Love your work

  2. Don't worry Miss Nomes, Miss Q can hang with Chrispy and Em. Both of them are definitely going to public schools. Even if we were really really rich I think we would probably still send them to public schools.
    Vic x

  3. Hi ladies, it's funny to get so caught up in something when my human has only just cracked 8 months old!!!! I'm a public school supporter - and not just by circumstance - i firmly believe it is the way to go. And so it will be for little Miss Q. But first we gotta learn to crawl!!! Thanks so much for reading and your support xx


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...