The way you were writing it seemed you were supportive of contracts and that you had actually signed it. Had you actually indicated when I first asked about your own contract, I would have known you were playing the advocate.
Realize the context of which we are speaking: Bad contracts. A good contract will be fair to both parties. A bad contract will not. An example was shown above and another linked at Bullshido that shows a contract that is harmful to the student and only helps the school.
I still think you are missing that important point. We are talking about BAD contracts, not a contract that is set up for a mutual gain. i.e.-home construction. Build it after being paid, or get sued. Etc. etc.
My "model" is as follows:
After a two week trial, Students complete their registration form and pay their registration fee which covers the first month's tuition. They get a student packet. 6 weeks after registration, they pick up a free uniform. This tells me they are dedicated and want to pursue training so I reward them with something tangible and useable (unlike a star on a uniform that rewards someone "doubly" for something they were already recognized for...which is another topic entirely). They pay month to month on a verbal agreement. You show up one day for a month, you owe for that month. If you don't pay, you are supposed to be asked to leave (I have yet to ask any of my students to leave for not paying; we usually work it out). I am fair and honest with my students and I have no inclination to harm them with dishonest business practices.