By SOME KERNELS OF TRUTH Nov. 6, 2014
SEATTLE, WA — Amazon insiders report that the company is in talks with school bus companies to create a partnership in which the buses and their passengers will help handle Amazon’s increased delivery demands during the holiday season.
As for how the proposed school bus partnership would work, Amazon employees say packages for certain neighborhoods would be retrieved by the bus drivers at a local warehouse before picking up the schoolchildren at the end of each school day. The drivers would then distribute packages to the children according to each child’s exact block of residence.
“Suppose a child lives on a block where two homes are due to receive packages; he or she would be given those packages to drop off on their way home from the bus,” said a company representative.
According to paperwork outlining the plans for the unique partnership, school bus companies would be paid for these services. As for the children, they will receive academic credit and grades for their work as part of a “Kidternships for the Holidays” program tied into schools’ curricula.
“We are especially proud to be able to provide children and their families with this experience. It is our belief that if children can handle taking on jobs like paper routes, they can assist us with delivering packages. In exchange, we are pleased to provide them with academic credit and valuable work experience,” said one Amazon representative.
Other company sources, however, say the initiative benefits Amazon more than the children.
“Since this program is not a job but is tied in with class lessons and homework, it’s exempt from child labor laws. I have to admit it’s a clever workaround, but we all know it primarily benefits us,” said an Amazon employee who spoke on condition of anonymity.
A teacher from a local school who will be involved in the program agrees. “I have never seen our lesson plans get changed so quickly; even those of us who work here can’t get that done very easily. I don’t know exactly what Jeff Bezos did to get this program rolling so quickly, but I hear it involves implying schools won’t get their own packages delivered on schedule if they don’t agree,” said the teacher, who asked to be unnamed. “And people would be surprised to know that we get a lot of our school supplies from Amazon. We’re as reliant on it as the public is,” she added.
As for how Amazon plans to handle packages that arrive late or damaged, or are not delivered at all, school representatives state harsh penalties will be involved.
“We’ve been forced to…I mean, we have decided to expel children who do not successfully deliver their packages. They will also receive failing grades for that task. This will be made very clear to our students as well as their families at the start of the program, and we do not anticipate any major problems that can’t be resolved,” said a school official involved in outlining the partnership’s arrangements.
Calls to Jeff Bezos as well as Amazon’s official media liaison were not returned as of press time.
Note: This is yet another “fake news” article by me; I was inspired to write it after reading a true piece on Mashable about Amazon partnering with taxicabs to deliver packages during the holiday rush. I responded on Twitter by joking that they should think of doing this with school buses and kids — and then realized I should write about it for fun! Hope you enjoyed it. 🙂