I've got a bone to pick with our local "public" schools.
The field trips, and class trips, and music trips are growing more extravagant and expensive with each passing year. Next year alone, the HS choir is going to DC at a price of over $500 per kid. The Honors English class is going to England. And the Spanish class is going to SPAIN for $thousands. In between that you throw in trips to nature centers, ball games, theatrical events, sports fees, drama fees, music fees, science fees etc. The kids are expected to raise money and go. Or get the $ from their parents or relatives. This is "enrichment" for these programs.
I say all "enrichment" offered by a public school should be equally available to ALL students regardless of their ability to pay. I just find these offerings morally reprehensible when only the kids with money can take advantage. My kids get fabulous grades, and are involved in plenty of activities, but they can't be "enriched" because we're broke.
Private schools? Don't care - charge away! Clubs? Travel all you want. Families? What you do with your own travel budget and time is none of my business. But when a public school sponsors and endorses trips that most middle to low income taxpayers can't swing, there's just something really wrong.
Also, why do HS kids need a trip to London or Spain? And why is it the school's job to organize that trip? And why do the people of this town have to be subjected to yet another magazine sale, or candy bar sale, or cookie dough sale to fund an ill-advised venture?
There are certain things we can't have because of our new economic picture. We can't get a car for them, we can't go to warm places during Spring Break, we can't get the latest fashions, etc. We accept this. But to have the public school, of all places, deny kids based on income goes against the principles of public education.