To think its time to ban end of term presents?

(229 Posts)
Worriedmind Fri 19-Jul-13 09:25:15

There are kids crying in the playground this morning because mum can't afford.

News said 1 in 11 buy less food to buy a present.

1 in 4 felt pressured to do so.

Teacher ends up.with loads of stuff they don't really want.

Aibu to think there should be a blanket ban and that teachers would be horrified if a child had gone without food to buy a gift.

Instead children could be given time in last week to make caress gift.

Aibu

Worriedmind Fri 19-Jul-13 10:01:48

I know of two schools that have banned none home made gifts so it can be done.

LegoAcupuncture Fri 19-Jul-13 10:04:46

I can't see the problem in showing appreciation to a teacher for all they've done, doesn't matter in what respect you show it, a card, a gift, a handmade cupcake, it's the thought that counts.

I've always done gifts but wouldn't do them if I couldn't afford them. I don't u them all at once, I buy them as and when so that the cost is less.

LegoAcupuncture Fri 19-Jul-13 10:04:59

U=buy

Mia4 Fri 19-Jul-13 10:05:48

My friend's a teacher, much as she loves getting gifts-wine and chocs usually- she ends up giving half away because she's on weightwatchers.

Her two favourite gifts were an A4 handmade thank you that the parent had laminated (she uses it as a mat on the table), and a small chilli plant that was grown from the parents bigger one.

Wine's usually a good bet because you can get offers from tesco, Iceland also often do 3 for £12, that's £4 each- no more's needed.

TheOriginalSteamingNit Fri 19-Jul-13 10:08:33

YABU. It's just that some people get silly about the amounts to spend.

And if it had been banned, I would have broken the ban to buy a present for dd's year 6 teacher last year, who was absolutely tremendous and made a genuine difference to her. If I want to buy the guy a present, I bloody well will, and I'm very glad I did.

Worriedmind Fri 19-Jul-13 10:12:15

"Her two favourite gifts were an A4 handmade thank you that the parent had laminated (she uses it as a mat on the table), and a small chilli plant that was grown from the parents bigger one"

"she ends up giving half away because she's on weightwatchers. "

^^this though, I read loads of times on her that teachers favourite gift or something they have kept is a bookmark/picture or card that little johnny made 20 years ago.

Do teachers even want all this stuff.

There were at least 20 big boxes/tins of chocolate alone this morning.

what on earth do they do with it all?

BeCool Fri 19-Jul-13 10:16:28

YY let's legislate against it! hmm

Or people could just make their own mind up about it and do what they want?

I agree it's the thought that counts. I will buy teacher a £5 bunch of gorgeous peonies & DD will make a card. If I couldn't afford £5 I wouldn't spend it. I would normally consider baking a cake or some biscuits but the oven just broke so I can't.

There was talk of getting a collective class present and putting in £5 each. But really it's all about the children giving the teacher a show of appreciation - which I don't think a collective present does.

A collective present shows that one of the parents got very busy & hassled collecting ££ from everyone, and choosing a pricey gift. It all goes wrong when its about the present. I said I would chip in £2 as DD would still want to give something personal, but I wasn't prepared to organise the collective gift and I didn't feel it was necessary.

I've lived with teachers - and they do come home with a bunch of crap. Wine - good. Chocolates of varying quality - some are OK, some just go in the bin. Flowers - lovely. Jewellery of dubious taste - no thanks. Regifted bubble bath - why not. Last day of school & Christmas was always a hoot when the teachers came home. The cards were the things they loved and appreciated the most (and the consumable gifts like wine/flowers/chocolates).

Worriedmind Fri 19-Jul-13 10:16:29

like I said then earlier, allow gifts to continue but find a way of them being given in which provides less opportunity for the competitive parent brigade doing it to show they have more money.

LegoAcupuncture Fri 19-Jul-13 10:16:35

If they are savvy like me when I get bottles of wine, give them away to family members at Christmas time.

BeCool Fri 19-Jul-13 10:20:22

Oh - the collective gift didn't happen afterall. I think the other Mums were pleased I said what I did and relieved them of the obligation they felt (and they did feel a genuine obligation to try to do this) to organise such a gift. I also said if we did do it, that every child in the class should be able to sign the card, regardless of if their parent chipped in or not. But I'm glad it didn't happen.

echt Fri 19-Jul-13 10:20:55

YANBU. No gift is ever needed. I've been teaching for yonks, and it's the cards and written thanks that count. I keep them for my annual review. grin

kooksi Fri 19-Jul-13 10:21:38

I agree ... blanket ban on gifts is the best idea ..

Nothing wrong with a home made thank you card (by child not parent) .. the rest is just showy

Orli Fri 19-Jul-13 10:34:01

I think is nice to give something small, especially if your teacher, like ours, went way over the strict lines of their duties. So I bout a card, a box of chocolate, and a special keyring that changes colours when there is too much UV rays, because it is related to our situation, and because some of the proceeds go to a charity close to my heart - the Albinism Fellowship.
I guess what I am trying to say is that you shouldn't "have to" buy presents, but you should "want to" (at least if you had a good teacher!)

BeCool Fri 19-Jul-13 10:34:38

Or you could change the way you feel about the 'competitive parent brigade'. Rather than envying them or admiring them or competing with them (in fact rather than being a competitive parent yourself), just pity them for being money focused, shallow, and concerned with what other people think!!

Who cares if parent X has more money and wants to show it? Disengage yourself and your child from THEIR priorities and their showy behaviour. Leave them to it. Why let their messed up values have any bearing on you whatsoever?

Whojamaflip Fri 19-Jul-13 10:36:38

It all gets out of hand at our school too - expensive pressies from parents who don't notice the cost.

I am one of the few who has to watch the pennies there so all dc's teachers and tas got a small posy of flowers from our garden tied up with garden twine and brown paper. I ended up making 28 to cover everyone (4 DC at the school - one in preschool so 12 for her alone confused )

Even if I had bought cheap chocolates for everyone it would still have cost me the guts if £100 shock - just couldn't do it.

Tailtwister Fri 19-Jul-13 10:40:46

I agree. If I was a teacher I would hate to think such upset was being caused by giving me a present.

We had a collection this year. Anonymous donations, everyone gave their own card if they wanted to. DS made some book marks and that was fine until he saw one mother march in with gift bags containing bottles of expensive champagne for each teacher! Hugely over the top and exhibitionist imo. However, each to their own I suppose.

Worriedmind Fri 19-Jul-13 10:41:17

Becool I don't give a shit what they take in or how much they spend.

It wasn't my child who was crying in the playground this morning because he had only made a card. His parent was gutted and said she felt.like a shit mum but had three in school and two had a job share so five teachers and then ta to buy for.

tedmundo Fri 19-Jul-13 10:42:16

I got my DCs to make cards and I even sucked it up and let them use glitter.

They wrote the message themselves too.

No gift other than this (their time and kind thoughts!)

Blimey, it hasn't got that out of hand in my DCs school

Might send in some chocs for staff room on Monday as it's my youngests last few days at primary - but have never felt under pressure

Make a nice card and be happy about it ! Will be just as much appreciated.

I think the parent whose child was upset that they 'only' had a card handled it badly - when the other kids asked "where's your present?" I'd have replied for him "his present is this lovely card that he made all by himself". That child had probably put more effort into the card than the kids whose parents had bought a present! As for parents going without food to buy a present - well you can't legislate against stupidity.

Slight thread hijack here but I am really worried about the present I bought my DS's teacher now. I bought her a little silver charm of her initial. It's really small and subtle and only cost me £3 but do you think it could look showy and like I'd spent £20 on her or something?! I wouldn't want to embarrass her. Expensive, flash gifts are awful and mine really isn't but I'm concerned that it might look like it is confused

chillybits Fri 19-Jul-13 10:58:37

Oh FFS surely people can make up their own mind without another bloody ban on something.

I LIKE teachers, the ones I have come across do a fantastic job, despite the governments insistence on making it as hard as possible for them. If there was one I thought made little effort I wouldn't contribute to the collection. In many many jobs there are small perks such as hampers from clients/suppliers, discounted shopping, free tickets to this and that. There seems to be such bitterness towards teachers.

Collections can be simple economics. The suggested amount in our school is usually about £10 but the absolute rule given to reps by the PTA is any money goes blind into an envelope (ie reps look away, its a bit of a joke), no-one is chased, no list is kept of who has and hasn't contributed and everyone is invited to sign the card regardless. The pot is split between multiple teachers and support staff and ensures the teachers get the very small perk of choosing something they might not buy themselves at the end of the year.

Part of parenting is to explain either your circumstances or beliefs to your children, not to rely on constant rules to enforce these for you.

pussycatwillum Fri 19-Jul-13 11:04:01

I was a Primary teacher for 27 years. DiL asked me what to give DGC's teacher and I said a card or something written by her, with a picture she has drawn.
After I retired I did Supply at DGC's school. I know what they did with their World's Best Teacher mugs. There was a cupboard full of them in the staffroom for use at breaks.

Worriedmind Fri 19-Jul-13 11:06:16

See chilly I would have no issue with your schools method.

In old school when they did a collection names who paid in full where ticked off a list, parents were chased and only those ticked off were allowed to write on card.

Your schools way is fine, no pressure on those that can't afford.

SooticaTheWitchesCat Fri 19-Jul-13 11:06:37

I am a class rep and at the end of the year I send a note to all the parents saying I am doing a collection and if they wish to put in they can. Some do, some don't but if a few parents want to put together then I don't see a problem.

I never chase people for money so no-one is made to feel bad if they don't put it. I would say about one third of the class put in and the others do their own thing whether it be small gifts, cards, homemade cakes etc.

BeCool Fri 19-Jul-13 11:13:55

But she doesn't have to buy for them - as others have said there are plenty of options.

So the child wasn't crying about the competitive present parents was he?

He was crying because he didn't have any gift to give. The child would be happy with any kind of gift to give his teacher, including something home made. For the child, it's simply about giving a gift.

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