This post was a part of our April Fool's Day edition of The Gladfly! Please don't think we're serious about this.

In light of the heroic efforts of some school districts around the country to "do more with more" by raising fees paid by students for things like school supplies, driver's ed, and sports, I'm excited to announce that the Thomas B. Fordham Institute will be charging you, our readers, for all the thoughts we produce as of today, April 1, 2011.

The fees will follow a tiered schedule based on how good the thoughts produced are. Half-baked thoughts produced during staff meetings or the Education Gadfly Show podcast will cost $500. Carefully researched ideas arrived at through rigorous analysis will cost anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000, based on their impact on student test scores. Brilliant ideas that have the potential to save American education before the next school year (most of which come from our staff assistant and interns) will cost a mere 1 million bucks. They have the potential to put us out of business if they work, after all, so we have to charge a bit more for them.

We've set up this plan to be as painless as possible for you, our audience. You'll be billed automatically by email whenever Mike, Amber, or one of our other researchers has an idea. Installment plans and payments via PayPal are available. Not only will this system help Fordham be more effective going forward, but I only get a bonus this year if I double our revenue. I'm sure you'll agree, this is an exciting change for us and for the children of America.

? Chris Tessone, Finance Director and Aspiring Fat Cat

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