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The Ugly American
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
  I went back to high school last night and...
I actually learned a few things.

My reason for going to high school last night you ask? For my Mug!

Those that know me and know my family know who the Mug is and for those of you that don' bad! Just kidding, the Mug is my youngest daughter who ain't so young anymore. She's a junior this year and last night was college prep night for juniors.

There was a lot of useful information passed to us last night but one that sticks in my craw, so to speak, was one about two web sites. One legitimate and the other a rip off.

The federal government has a website called FAFSA stands for FREE Application for Federal Student Aid. The key word there being FREE. Now, if you do a Google search for FAFSA you get a lot of hits. The very first one that comes up is the real web site. A little farther down is FAFSA.COM, the rip off site. These robbers and there really is no other word for them except maybe asshole, charge $79.99 to do what can be done for free.

I will give them credit for one thing and only one thing. At the top of the page is a very small disclaimer with a link to the real FAFSA web site. But right along with that disclaimer are notes all over the site that seem to try to scare you into using them for this package rather than try it on your own. They also have some CA congressman’s' quote that says something along the lines of how daunting a task this could be, especially if you have language difficulties. The problem with that line of BS is that the FAFSA.Ed.Gov site has bilingual forms!

The other piece of useful information that I had to about pry out of these admin types was that if your son or daughter takes more than one SAT, the results can be combined. What I mean is, let's say, my daughter, the Mug, takes her first SAT in June. And let's also say that she did very well in math, but blew the English portion of the test. Then, we set her up for another attempt and this time she tears up the English portion but chokes on the math. I was told that her SAT results will indicate her highest scores from both tests. Now, let's say she takes it a third time and she's having one of those know those days teenagers have...who am I kidding, those days that we ALL have...and she tanks both sections. It doesn't matter. She gets to keep her best scores. I like that.

The reason that I said pry above was because I was asking the guidance counselor why my daughter should take these monster tests before she's completed her education. My reasoning was why waste $42 a pop when she can learn a little more and do better at a later time. One of these bonehead "educators" kept wanting to tell me that if my daughter was on free or reduced lunch she can take the test for free. I finally had to let her know that money wasn't the real issue, that my kid wasn't on free or reduced lunch and that no matter how much money I made or didn't make, flushing $42 down the toilet didn't appeal to me. I also made a comment about admin types in school making to much money as was evidenced by the principals’ car in the parking lot...what's that? What kind of car was it? Wouldn’t you like to drive a Lexus 400? Piece of cake. Go down to your local Lexus dealer and stroke a check for around $66,000 and you can drive one off the lot.

But anyway...that's my rant for today. I really thought that anyone that has a kid the same age as mine should know some of this stuff...
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Not sure if I am THE ugly American, but I must be AN ugly American, because some Canadian told me so!!!

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Location: Virginia Beach, United States

20 year Navy vet, originally from NJ now living in Virginia Beach and yeah, Life Is Good!

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