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Primary school leaving party

(106 Posts)
YorkshirePuddingsGreatestFan Fri 29-Dec-17 07:55:50

Planning this has been a horrible experience. I'm a single parent with a single salary coming in and I just can't afford to spend a fortune on it.

There was already a row as people wanted to spend £75+ per child on the party with suggestions of a formal evening do at a local castle and hiring a funfair etc. The people wanting to spend more are all couples with dual salary coming in and have said they can afford this so this is what they want to spend.

Several people including me said it was a ridiculous amount to spend and pushed for £25 max and offered cheap alternatives. We can have a local hall for free and do the usual party games and disco with pizzas and snacky food from a takeaway nearby. This wasn't special enough and too boring for their children. Or we could go to a local trampoline/bowling etc venue with one activity and the usual burger and chips type meal. The people who wanted to spend more slated this idea as their children go to local trampoline/bowling places regularly so it's not special or different enough for their children.

It was left that the various options would be explored and a final plan drawn up around the £25 a head mark. I was called pathetic and accused of spoiling things by those who can afford it as apparently I'm not willing to compromise. Not quite sure how I can compromise when personal finances mean I just can't justify spending £75+ on a children's party.

My job is seasonal and goes seriously mental in December. I've put long hours in at work so I've not been on Facebook much and hadn't noticed posts in the group. It wasn't until I noticed a demand for money yesterday that I realised the final plans have been drawn up.

A themed bus has been booked which is different and more expensive to the one that was originally suggested. This will take them to a venue an hours drive away where they can choose a leisure activitie and have some food. The people who can't afford to spend more will then leave while the children who can afford it will stay and do further activities. The cost is £35 a head.

AIBU in feeling annoyed by this? It's going to cost me more than I agreed to pay, I don't see the point in travelling all that way just to do trampolining or bowling when they can do that within a few miles of home and I'm really really narked by the two tier system with an extended party for those who can afford to pay more.

losingmymindiam Fri 29-Dec-17 08:20:52

Seems ridiculous. Surely an end of primary celebration should include all of the year and be affordable for all otherwise what is the point?! I can understand the way you feel. To be honest I think the ending of primary school thing has gone a bit bonkers...

losingmymindiam Fri 29-Dec-17 08:22:51


missyB1 Fri 29-Dec-17 08:25:29

Ffs they are primary school kids! these “leaving celebrations” are getting out of hand! Honestly what a vile set of parents they must be to want to exclude children from poorer families from some of the party. I would be sickened by this.

notsohippychick Fri 29-Dec-17 08:27:35

That’s awful!!!! What about the children who don’t go on to do the activities? How are they going to feel?

Our leaving party is in the local hall!!! By all accounts they have a lovely time!

You are not unreasonable to feel this way. I’d be livid!!

notsohippychick Fri 29-Dec-17 08:28:29

missy my thoughts exactly. Horrible people!!!! Id be inclined to say that too.

UrsulaPandress Fri 29-Dec-17 08:29:09

I organised a disco for 40 in a local hall with decorations, food and a gift for £7 a head.

When is this party?

FrancisCrawford Fri 29-Dec-17 08:30:45

That’s a really nasty thing to do.
What horrid people to even think of such a thing

Starlighter Fri 29-Dec-17 08:32:42


Such selfish and unreasonable behaviour on their part. How dare they exclude children based on what their parents can afford?!

The party should include everyone and I think £25 per head is perfectly reasonable. If these parents want to spend more, then so be it, but it should include all the children.

What’s wrong with a hall party?!

Nectarines Fri 29-Dec-17 08:33:10

Oh my goodness why on Earth do they need to spend that sort of money? I work in a large cluster of primary schools and they all just have a disco costing parents a couple of quid. They’re 11 years old.

You are surely not the only parent who will struggle to afford it.

I’m not sure what the solution it if they’re hell bent on this daft extravagance.

Iwanttobe8stoneagain Fri 29-Dec-17 08:34:54

They are now having primary school leaving parties (won’t be long before it’s a prom)??? I can see both sides to this. If you are having a celebration it needs to be something equally exciting for all the kids. If some of the kids do the activity you suggest every week then it wouldn’t be as much fun for them. I actually think a good compromise has been reached. Unfortunate you are always going to have the haves and have nots. It’s likely the richer parents would have gone off and done something after anyway, but sounds like the majority of the day will be accessible to all.

Pengggwn Fri 29-Dec-17 08:35:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Chocolatecake12 Fri 29-Dec-17 08:36:47

Absolutely ridiculous. You are not BU at all.
Would you consider your child not going and doing something special just you and them?
Were you the only parent who stated they wanted to only spend £25? Have you spoken to them about what they feel and what they’ll do?
I’m appalled that parents are willing to spend stupid amounts on an 11 year olds leaving party.
But I’m impressed that it’s being organised so early!

CheeseCrackersAndWine Fri 29-Dec-17 08:36:54

People do this? When I left primary the school put on a ceilidh in the gym hall one evening and that was it... There is NO WAY I would be forking out £75 for my daughter to celebrate leaving primary school and we could afford it - to be honest, £25 is pretty generous in my opinion since it's for a total non occasion!!

TurquoiseDress Fri 29-Dec-17 08:40:10

No you're not BU at all.

Things have certainly changed since I left primary school!

Surely the whole point is that all the children are together, taking photos, signing each other's shirts (am I showing my age??!!)

Or is it all Prom style madness nowadays? These kids are 11 aren't they?

clarrylove Fri 29-Dec-17 08:40:52

That's crazy. Our school parents are generally pretty well off but last year we had a party in the school grounds with a bbq, done by one of the parents, a bouncy slide, mocktail bar and photo booth which the kids set up themselves, and water pistol fights. I think we paid £12.50 each which included a photo book and the kids had a riot. Although the PTA also donated £250 towards it. Can the PTA offer a subsidy for the event?

Jerseysilkvelour Fri 29-Dec-17 08:43:43

I think it's a horrible plan. Purely because it excludes some kids whose parents can't afford the extra cost. Very inconsiderate of the other parents.

sussexman Fri 29-Dec-17 08:44:10


Gazelda Fri 29-Dec-17 08:45:00

I'd be sending a message on the FB group to say that you're saddened that a 2 tier event had been organised, which disadvantages a group of children whose parents don't have as much disposable income as others. There's no need to mention that you're a single parent, it's purely a financial discrimination.
I'd let my DS decide if he wants to go or not (although as the payment is now due, I presume you have missed the opt in date?).
I'd also be making sure the school are aware of this. Our HT would be beyond furious. I'm not sure if she can intervene but I'm sure she can make her feelings known and take steps to ensure it doesn't happen in future years.
I'm astounded that this has been organised and is being paid for so early in the school year (presuming you're Uk based).

AJPTaylor Fri 29-Dec-17 08:45:02

At all of dds schools, it was a school disco.
At 1 middle school it became a thing for limos to arrive but 2 years later the Head wrote to parents asking them not to as it created a them and us atmosphere and much of the term was tainted by arguments about who was going with who.
In your situation its soo difficult cos you cant tell your dd she is not going to the school leavers thing. Is the school not doing a disco or something? Youngest dds current school do a campfire and camp on the school field.

Margaritaanyone89 Fri 29-Dec-17 08:45:42

What awful people. 75 pounds is absurd and their behaviour towards you was out of line.

At least it's only 10 more then what you suggested and not near the 75 mark.

Is it 35 per head, for all activities included? Or 35 per head and other activities require extra cost?

sarahjconnor Fri 29-Dec-17 08:45:57

Our school is in a very wealthy area and the kids went to a local Italian for half a pizza each and then played in the local park supervised by a few parents. The main thing was they organise it themselves and ensured every child was invited/included/interested.

k2p2k2tog Fri 29-Dec-17 08:48:06

This is crazy. It is not part of the culture round here to have big events for kids leaving Primary School - other parts of Scotland do in for the proms with the limos and fake tan but not here.

My daughter left Primary last summer, the school arranged for the whole year to go bowling which we paaid £10 for, two games of bowling and a fast food meal. The parents decided to do another separate event and had a vote between a simple disco/buffet in a local hall, or a night out trampolining. Kids voted trampolining, cost another £10 ish and we organised transport etc ourselves.

It is hard not getting sucked into this lunacy but someone has to take a stand and shout to stop - lots of other parents will be thinking the same as you but will be too scared to speak up.

Trampire Fri 29-Dec-17 08:48:14

Omg. That's awful.

I'm currently in the middle of organising my second Leavers party. My dd left 2 years ago. To be frank there was a lot of arguments. Many wanted a full-on formal do with prom dresses and bow ties etc. Me and a few others said that if that happened our dcs simply wouldn't attend as they hated dresses/suits etc. So we decided on a wear what you want policy. It worked well, plenty wore prom dresses and plenty wore t-shirt and jeans etc.

We hired a community hall, decorated it ourselves and had a disco. It was £20 all in.

The biggest arguments were about transport. Some parents hired expensive limos (we hired a mini bus for £3 a head). In the end the limos didn't turn up and left the other kids stranded.

I know last year our primary school had no Leavers do because there were so many fights and arguments about it they all flounced.

OP, your schools plans sound awful. I can't believe there aren't others who aren't feeling the way you are. It's awful to have a 2 tier party and I reckon it will disintegrate before them.

BigGreenOlives Fri 29-Dec-17 08:48:58

That is completely inappropriate. Surely the whole point of a end of school activity is to do something together to celebrate moving on? A show-off party is bonkers, accessible to all is the most important factor. We held a fundraising disco in the spring term to subsidise the cost of leavers’ sweatshirts to ensure they were a low enough price for all children to be able to have them.

KiteMarked Fri 29-Dec-17 08:49:44

Horrible behaviour. Can you organise a private party for just your child's friends and forget the snobs party?

Why aren't they holding it at the school, anyway?! It should be about memories made there, surely.

ClashCityRocker Fri 29-Dec-17 08:50:28

Ffs when I was wee we just had a little bop and party food in the school hall.

Redisthemagicolour Fri 29-Dec-17 08:52:31

Our school has a leaving party at the school. Red carpet, dressed up, awards (for all sorts of things not jut academic). Cost to parents - £0. Ok some children got new dresses/outfits but there was no pressure to do anything more than wear something reasonable like any party. Kids had the best time.

Fatarseflanagan09 Fri 29-Dec-17 08:52:56

Leaving parties for primary school kids, baby showers, proms, pamper parties for eight year olds, cake smashes or whatever they're called, no wonder kids are growing up entitled, what a load of pretentious bollocks.

grasspigeons Fri 29-Dec-17 08:55:42

How deeply unpleasant to specifically organise a two tier event based on income so all the poor kids can be dragged away from THEIR party before its finished - or their parents have to switch the heating off and skip meals for a few weeks to let them stay at their own leaving party.

I bet you can not wait to never see some of them again.

our school did a picnic in the field for their leavers but then our school 50% of the children are on pupil premium. The wealthier children coped with it not being a mega day out.

shhhfastasleep Fri 29-Dec-17 08:56:18

We're hiring a room and a dj. All parents bring a bit of food. The kids wear what they'd wear to a school disco. A tenner each and any parent who is a bit short of cash, we sort it between us. That's what the parents have done every year for ages. All the other stuff mentioned here sounds batshit crazy.

allthgoodusernamesaretaken Fri 29-Dec-17 08:56:24

last year we had a party in the school grounds with a bbq, done by one of the parents, a bouncy slide, mocktail bar and photo booth which the kids set up themselves, and water pistol fights. I think we paid £12.50 each which included a photo book and the kids had a riot

This sounds brilliant !

allthgoodusernamesaretaken Fri 29-Dec-17 08:57:36

Back to OP

The people who can't afford to spend more will then leave while the children who can afford it will stay and do further activities

That sounds horrible, but I expect most people won't go for it, so the plan will be changed

FestiveNinja Fri 29-Dec-17 08:57:43

Kids don’t need OTT parties when leaving primary school.
Luckily I live in an area with sane parents so cannot imagine them organising anything more fancy than a school disco.
Presumably, this party is for next July?
Plenty of time for plans to be changed.

Payfrozen Fri 29-Dec-17 08:58:01

I have noticed the whole primary leavers fest ramping up over the years. When DC4 left last year there was a trip, a show, a prom style party (disco in school hall funded by pta tbf). It all went on and on.

When the last day of school finally arrived it was like some cult mass hysteria with kids and adults crying. You"d have thought someone had died rather than than year 6 who without a doubt had outgrown primary, simply moving on to nice secondary.

DC4 came out saying "I dont want to leave." I said cheerfully "i can ask Mrs headteacher if you can come back next year?." He laughed and we went to get an icecream.

OP i am sorry you are in that position. IMO they dont need the party at all nevermind an expensive one. £35 is a lot of money and YANBU.

The one comfort is that you wont need to see or have much to do with these parents next year. Its very different at secondary thankfully.

Toomanycats99 Fri 29-Dec-17 09:02:45

In our school the pta pay for a trip to the theatre for y6. The leavers party is in a local hall to hire. We will do food ourselves and there will be a dj.

Quietvoiceplease Fri 29-Dec-17 09:02:49

This is vile.
In terms of a primary school leaving party, the organisers have gifted their children with some great life lessons: that excluding people because they have less money is OK; that over-ruling the needs (not wants, but needs) of those with less money is OK.
How on earth has the HT sanctioned a celebration like this?

My experience of primary school parties is that the children want to all be together in a hall (preferably the school one, as that is where their memories lie), be given pizza and sweets, loud music and scope to run around. Job done, probably less than a fiver per head.

Please, please call out the organisers and complain to the school.

Smoothyloopy Fri 29-Dec-17 09:03:42

They don't even leave for another 7 months. My DD is in year 6 & no one's even mentioned a leavers party yet. It didn't even occur to me to think about it this early!

NapQueen Fri 29-Dec-17 09:04:35

75quid a head!? I didnt even spend that on my wedding.


TabbyMumz Fri 29-Dec-17 09:05:02

How ridiculous. Ours had a disco in the school hall. We paid nothing. They all ran around having bags of fun and came out soaking from sweat but happy.

billybagpuss Fri 29-Dec-17 09:05:35

Is it 'the school' organising it or a 'parent group'. I've come across this situation before when the lower disposable income group got in touch with the head who well and truly put her foot down and they had a trip on an open top bus followed by a party at school.

It has got well and truly out of hand and the pp who said that she can see both sides that it should be 'special' for all kids so the higher income people should be able to do more - this is rubbish, they are 11, a traditional party to bid farewell to the school and friends going elsewhere is more than sufficient.

WizardOfToss Fri 29-Dec-17 09:06:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Thedietstartsnow Fri 29-Dec-17 09:07:02

Have you got the heads email? I know for a fact the head at our school would not allow the head,explain you can't afford it ,explain about the 2 tire system...any decent head will nip it in the bud and do a school disco x

justmatureenough2bdad Fri 29-Dec-17 09:09:52

surely though, setting aside whether or not yoi think the principle of an expensive leaving party is right/good/necessary... tou are all adult involved.. it sounds like a healthy and reasonable consultation was carried out and a compromise reached... some people wanted more, some less... a solution in the middle (towards the lower end) was reached... yabu to assume that your upper limit should be the defining parameter for this event. yanbu to be frustrated at the personal expense. ywbu to denigrate or deride othet parents who are willing to spend more money on their children at such a key transition period in their lives... that's their decision like it or not

Wh0KnowsWhereTheTimeG0es Fri 29-Dec-17 09:09:56

YANBU. I helped organise one last summer, hired the local church hall, a parent ran a photo booth, kids did water fights and games in the garden and we got pizza, crisps and squash plus “bucks fizz” (orange juice and lemonade), cost £5 a head, it was a great party.

Trb17 Fri 29-Dec-17 09:09:57

Ridiculous! YANBU.

DD’s Primary threw the Y6 kids a disco in the school hall and ordered dominoes pizza with a DJ making it special.

Flashy parents organised limos & carriages to bring their kids. Normal parents let the kids walk with friends grin

All kids had a ball and, aside from a new party outfit, we spent nothing.

Aworldofmyown Fri 29-Dec-17 09:10:00

You need to get the school involved, these parents are being incredibly selfish.

Trb17 Fri 29-Dec-17 09:10:47

Disco, DJ and pizza all paid for by School btw

hiyasminitsme Fri 29-Dec-17 09:11:06

That's crazy. At the (private) school my daughter goes to we bring in the year 6 leavers party at under £20 per head and people still complain!

zen1 Fri 29-Dec-17 09:11:43

YANBU. I don't get where all these fancy ideas for primary school leaving parties have suddenly come from. When DC2 left last year, we all just met up in the local park after school and people brought their own picnics. It meant all siblings could come too, people could come and go as they pleased and the children could run around and let off steam. If it were me, I wouldn't go, but I understand that you may not want your DC to miss out. It is especially horrible for them to arrange something where people who can't afford to do more activities have to leave early.

user1498927651 Fri 29-Dec-17 09:11:44

YANBU. Our primary had a day out at an adventure park for less than £10 per child (transport may have been a bit extra), and a party in the classroom followed by games on the sports field.

End of primary celebrations should be accessible for all children, which means planned to be affordable for all families, and the class covering the cost of any children whose parents still can't pay.

Aworldofmyown Fri 29-Dec-17 09:14:15

Also our year 6 leavers have to raise money for their party. Doing jobs for friends and family. Having bake sales at school etc etc

70isaLimitNotaTarget Fri 29-Dec-17 09:16:25


So they all go off in the decorated bus , for a hour drive. The ones who are going to the activities go on to do that.....
And the others? Do they hang around on the bus?
Or go home? (Does the bus take them back or d they need to make other arrangements)

Sounds mean beyond belief angry

Our school Yr 6 did fundraising and Mini Enterprise which the pupils organised and raised money fr an end of term trip ( disco was in the school)

YorkshirePuddingsGreatestFan Fri 29-Dec-17 09:21:01

Just to answer the questions:

Yes it's for 11 year olds and it's in July next year.

The school don't organise any of this. They do a leaving assembly on the last day. This is all left up to the parents to organise. I'm not sure if the head is aware of anything that has happened.

The PTA refused to put any funding into it. They said they didn't feel it was an appropriate use of funds spending it on a party organised by parents and would rather spend money on things that benefit children in school. That's fair enough and I agree with them to be honest.

It's £35 for transport one way, an activity and some food. It's a leisure complex with bowling/trampolines/laser quest/roller skating etc all under one roof. They'll be split up while they do their activity of choice, then be together for food. The ones who can afford it will stay and do further activities after the food.

There's still the cost of a leaving hoody that has been suggested to consider too. They have permission from the head to wear them instead of school jumpers in the last term. I don't know how much that will cost yet but feel obliged to buy one otherwise you run the risk of your child being singled out because they haven't got a hoody.

I'd prefer it if they went somewhere local with one activity that they all did together. It's cheaper, easier for the parents to get to and it cuts out the two tier thing.

StrawBasket Fri 29-Dec-17 09:23:11

The party should be on the school ground, that's the whole point - regardless of your income-! When people want to treat their children, they have enough term breaks, weekends, birthdays to do so. It's a shame to do something not related to the school that way, and that's even before talking finance.

NapQueen Fri 29-Dec-17 09:24:33

I like the idea of a leaving hoodie, especially if it has evryones names listed on the back - sentimental and something lovely to reminisce over in years to come.

Why not just ask the school if you can book their hall for after school one day, maybe hire one of those portable ice rinks, a candy floss machine and some disco music?

SparkleFizz Fri 29-Dec-17 09:24:36


Surely a primary school leaving party should be priced so that as many children as possible can afford to attend? I’d have thought it’s more about them having fun with their friends, not about doing fancy “special” expensive activities.

HamishBamish Fri 29-Dec-17 09:25:48

It’s very unfair to have a 2 tier party. I’m not sure if I would say anything at this stage though. I also wouldn’t involve the school. It’s really not their remit to comment on something which has been organised outside school.

MiaowTheCat Fri 29-Dec-17 09:25:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

soimpressed Fri 29-Dec-17 09:26:03

In previous years our school had started to go towards a type of prom - travelling in limos and pressure to couple up. It was ridiculous and caused all sorts of stress for the parents and the kids. Thankfully by the time DD left someone spoke up and said they didn't want it and all but one parent supported her. We had a picnic in the park with games straight after school and then a disco and barbecue in a local hall in the evening. It was perfect.

SimonBridges Fri 29-Dec-17 09:38:49

Utter madness.
Most of them will still be at school together the following year anyway.

So wrong to have a two tear do.

Aworldofmyown Fri 29-Dec-17 09:40:20

We have hoodies - they are lovely and still worn!! Ours have the childs surname on the back then all the kids first names printed inside the year number.

AuntLydia Fri 29-Dec-17 09:48:01

What absolutely horrible people with awful priorities. I really feel for you op. Roll on secondary school when you won't have to have anything to do with them hey?

user1498927651 Fri 29-Dec-17 09:48:07

We had hoodies, but not until the end of the school year. Most primary kids would only be wearing a jumper at the start of the summer term anyway. I think it is fairer to wait so that kids don't stand out for not having one.

Witchend Fri 29-Dec-17 09:59:26

I think it sounds really horrible-ours have a special disco with BBQ which costs about £5 a head. I'm glad it's no bigger.

I believe a couple of years above dd1 a few parents started getting posh transport for the disco, but the school requested that stopped.

The only issue I had was this price included an "official photographer" in dd1's year. Who was a parent. Photos went: Photographer's dd with friend A forwards,
Photographer's dd with friend A walking away looking backwards,
Photographer's dd with friend B forwards,
Photographer's dd with friend B walking away looking backwards,
Photographer's dd with friend A and B forwards,
Photographer's dd with friend A and B walking away looking backwards,
Silly picture of Photographer's dd with friend A and B.
Photographer's dd with friend C forwards...
Out of 500 photographs 446 contained that same child. Yes, I was sad enough to count up. Tbf 5 of them were a group photo, so all were in it. Although guess who was centre front "cutting" the celebration cake. grin

However I can see where it has come from. There's such a big gap between what Op wanted and what they wanted that they weren't going to get a solution that they both liked, and the £35 is far closer to Op's idea than theirs. I suspect they're no happier.

With the bus, I don't think it costs much more to go further, so it makes sense in a lot of ways to choose somewhere further to get more use out of it.
By having a multi-activity area, it's then giving the children the option to choose trampolining if that's what they like, or if they go trampolining regularly there's different things etc.

I think the badly thought out bit is the "stay for further activities if you can afford it". But I guess it depends slightly on how many are likely to choose to stay-or want to. I'm sure two of mine would have had enough by that point. If over half are leaving, and not a huge amount is made that others are staying then it wouldn't be much of an issue.

And in a lot of ways it's good that they're being upfront, so you can prepare your dd. Much worse is if a group of parents got together and decided they were staying on or going on to "something better" and make a big thing about it on the day.

RedHelenB Fri 29-Dec-17 10:01:45

Hoodies make more sense for end of secondary when they have finished growing. As to the party I can see both viewpoints and the party bus sounds fun. But the whole point is that as many of the year get to go as possible.

Candlelight234 Fri 29-Dec-17 10:08:02

The two tier party is a particularly nasty idea, it will be quite upsetting I imagine for those who have to leave.
When my DS left primary school they did a hoody for the final term, cost to parents £7 I think the pta put some cash towards it. The party was about £20 and was a limo, hire of a hall & dj and buffet done at cost price by a parent who had a sandwich shop.
£75 is an outrageous sum imo.

SciFiFan2015 Fri 29-Dec-17 11:17:26

Do you have any information about the cost of the school day you could link the Facebook group to? It shows that we need to find ways to include everyone not create barriers (in this case a two tier solution).
Our primary had been getting grander and grander ideas about leaving. Thankfully a forward thinking group of parents stripped all the bullshit out of it. Now P7s get piped out of school (nothing like the swirl o' bagpipes!) to a water fight. Bit of lunch and then a party at a local hall. We even use the same theme year after year so that we can reuse the decorations!!!
We have a leavers hoody but we try and get sponsorship to bring the cost down. Every child can have one this year for £10 each.
Your situation. Sounds horrible. Good luck

Stompythedinosaur Fri 29-Dec-17 11:32:45

That sounds horrible and I hate the two tier thing.

If the plans go ahead could you arrange to pick up your dc and maybe a friend or two for a sleepover so they are going on to something fun (but free) rather than their fun ending while others are still doing nice things?

LoniceraJaponica Fri 29-Dec-17 11:38:13

I would just not go along with all the expensive stuff. If enough parents said no way wouldn't the cost of the bus have to be spread among those that were going? So maybe it would be £50 each instead of £35?

You need to agree a maximum budget and stick to it. Don't be guilt tripped or coerced into anything more expensive. If enough parents did this the expensive party is only going to happen for a few children. Then it wouldn't be a leavers party.

TeenTimesTwo Fri 29-Dec-17 11:45:34


When DD1 left primary the PTA organised a whole school disco that the y6s could use as their leaving celebration too.

When DD2 left 6 years later they (or rather 3 parents really) fundraised during the year. The school then organised spending of the money in discussion with the children. They did a camp out at school with an inflatable disco tent or something and a BBQ.

I think what the parents are planning is divisive and overly expensive and unnecessary. It runs the risk of spoiling the last few weeks of term for some of the children.

PersianCatLady Fri 29-Dec-17 11:53:10

£75, really??

I8toys Fri 29-Dec-17 12:40:45

Its in July!! The school needs to step in and stop this madness now. Excluding those that cannot afford it is the most horrible thing I've heard.

NotYetMadeYourMindUp Fri 29-Dec-17 12:43:03

Sounds fucking bonkers. Since when was a formal evening do appropriate for 11 year olds?

Allthetuppences Fri 29-Dec-17 12:52:54

Our pta put on a bbq the food funded by a year 6 cake sale at the local rugby club for free, just had to buy drinks and snacks. It went on later than I thought appropriate but it was so inoffensive as to get a visit from the two year 6 teachers and TA's for about an hour.
Extremely cheap and the year 6's felt very much the centre of attention. Only boycotted by those parents who didn't want to supervise their (or a few) children.

Lightbulb57 Fri 29-Dec-17 12:54:25

You are definitely NBU! £75 pp is ridiculous and is bound to exclude some of the class. The year 6 mums at our school book the back room of the local pub and get pizza and chips from the local Italian. With entertainment of some kind and a little party gift it works out at about £7 pp I think? I think £25 is pushing it!!

DSHathawayGivesMeFannyGallops Fri 29-Dec-17 12:57:48

I didn't pay that much for my sixth form leavers ball from one of the most expensive boarding schools in the country. And I went to school with people who could have afforded double that. They are being v v U. I'd definitely contact the school about the 2 tier thing as that will seep into the classroom and poison the next 2 terms, too.

LoniceraJaponica Fri 29-Dec-17 13:00:36

DD's year 11 prom last year at a local Holiday Inn was only £24 each. Just saying.

halcyondays Fri 29-Dec-17 13:01:59

The people wanting to spend £75 must be mad. DD1 went to hers last year, was in the school, organised by the PTA cost about £5.

Osolea Fri 29-Dec-17 13:19:00

The two tier thing sounds horrible, but if there was a significant enough number of people who wanted to go for the expensive option then I'm not sure what else could be done to keep everyone happy.

They're right that it wouldn't be special for some children if they do the cheaper activities every week, and all children deserve to be considered. That includes both those whose parents want to spend more, and those who want to spend less. As the whole thing is optional then anyone who really doesn't like it doesn't have to go, but it really is very difficult keeping everyone happy when planning something like this. It sounds like there would disgruntled parents whatever was chosen.

Groovee Fri 29-Dec-17 13:23:17

Our primary school organised it. They organised a ceilidh and the PTA who had a few parents in catering did the food.

The parents organised an after party as the ceilidh was 90 minutes. That cost £5 a head and included drinks and food.

We also did Limos at £30 a head but gave 6 months notice so £5 a month.

Mumwiferealist2003 Fri 29-Dec-17 13:25:42

I think you should query what's happened. Why should a select few change what had been agreed? An elitist element to it is wrong too. Will make those not staying feel bad and in turn guilt the parents.
I know of a school where the parents are wanting a party bus to drive from school and around for an hour then back to school where the do is going to be. There has been talk of photo booths, sweet carts, leavers hoodies and other stuff. Half the kids aren't bothered, a lot don't know what a prom is because that's what it's being called and none of them are getting a choice what they do. They are leaving primary. What is wrong with a disco in will, some crisps and stuff in bowls and some party games? Let them have fun, not stress the parents out who can't afford the extravagance but end up having to so their kids don't miss out and let them be kids!

HermionesRightHook Fri 29-Dec-17 13:26:30

That is awful. I would be completely ashamed to be one of the parents who went along with this horrible divisive plan.

I second the suggestion further up about planning a second part to the party yourself for free if you can; invite a few of DD's friends to a free trip somewhere nice and grown up afterwards (fun free museum near by or a fake-champagne and nibbles party in a park - lemonade out of pound shop plastic champagne glasses?) then a sleepover.

That way they're leaving for a better special event not just going home while everyone else has fun.

Mycarsmellsoflavender Fri 29-Dec-17 13:27:36

Ours is free, on school grounds, with food and drink funded by the PTA. Even £25 sounds exorbitant to me for primary school.

Mycarsmellsoflavender Fri 29-Dec-17 13:29:18

And parents are included too. With free wine!

elliejjtiny Fri 29-Dec-17 13:47:25

This is ridiculous. My ds1 is in year 7 and this is what they did. They went to the cinema together using money they had raised themselves in teams. Each team was given £5 and they had a competition to make the most money. 1 team made and sold crafts, another team did a beat the goalie thing and another team bought a load of ice pops and sold them. All in the playground at home time. They raised enough to give the pta back their £20, half money raised to charity and the other half for their cinema trip. Then they had the leavers barbeque. All children from school, parents and siblings invited. Year 6's got a burger or hotdog free, everyone else paid. I think it was £1.50 for a burger or hotdog and then you could buy sweets, drinks, ice lollies, crisps etc if you wanted. They had a water fight on the last day of term and the usual shirt signing and leavers service. Total cost to me was less than £10 although I could have made it less by not bringing my non year 6 dc . We live in an area where probably none of the parents could have afforded an event costing them £75 and many of them would have struggled with a £25 event to be honest.

StrawBasket Fri 29-Dec-17 13:54:46

I still think there's nothing better than a party on school grounds, but it should not be funded by the PTA, money should go to things helping the kids.

It does seem that parents who come up with a 2 part outing were trying to include everybody, and give the choice to parents to spend more or less. It's not that bad on that ground. The whole event is not great at all, it's the sort of places where kids organise birthday parties, so nothing special for the children.

It's not too late to change the plans!

cathf Fri 29-Dec-17 14:03:25

Never heard of anything remotely like this here. Is it a regional thing?
Our Y6s (only 9 pupils admittedly) have a sleepover and takeaway in the school hall on the Thursday, then usual end of term stuff on the Friday. This year, the educational two-night trip away is on the Mon and Tue of the last week, but I will assume the sleepover will go ahead. Cost to parents: £0 but still special for the children.

Lucylululu Fri 29-Dec-17 14:29:52

I didn't even know they did leaving activities. Never heard of them. But if you are going to have this activity then I can see why it would need to be a bit flexible to suit everyone. If you can't/dont want to spend more it isn't really fair that nobody can spend more either. Its not fair that some children will get to do the second part and some won't but then its also not fair to dictate what other parents can and can't pay for for their own children. It's sad that some children will feel left out but also i understand why the other parents would want to make it special for their children and not just any old thing they do regularly. So I think you are being unreasonable but also this whole event is unreasonable and of course problems like this will arise!

billybagpuss Fri 29-Dec-17 14:37:18

You have to get in touch with the school, its all very well them leaving it up to the parents but when you have a 2 tier system that will alienate half the year in the schools name they have to know and have the opportunity to regulate it.

BarbarianMum Fri 29-Dec-17 14:37:41

shock Ours had a disco with pizza (£3 a head) and the option of a meal in the local Chinese restaurant (£10 plus drinks). Some of the girls might have done the dress/hsir/nails thing but the boys all wore their usual jeans and t shirts.

newmumwithquestions Fri 29-Dec-17 15:11:03

Mine are too young for this but £25 sounds more than enough to come up with something. £75 is bonkers.

ForalltheSaints Fri 29-Dec-17 16:55:43

Have nothing more to do with it, other than contacting the Head and the Chair of Governors to point out how bad this is and suggesting that the school has nothing to do with it. They should not even support the wearing of a hoody.

If you are content with being quoted, perhaps contact with local press or radio would be a good thing- the school would certainly withdraw all support if they thought there was bad publicity.

Think how far £75 could go towards education for someone in a developing country. Perhaps some fundraising for a charity instead of the narcissistic event would be better.

As for proms, if I were education secretary, they would not be allowed on any school premises.

Urubu Fri 29-Dec-17 17:37:28

What can the school do, though? It is organized and paid for by parents, out of school grounds, yes all leavers are invited but is that enough to give the school any authority over it? Just wondering...

ElfOneself Fri 29-Dec-17 17:49:05

Ludicrous. My primary it was all the slightly more affluent parents who were organising it (they are the ones who had the time), they were so mindful of wanting it to be the kind of thing everyone could go to, a few other parents put in expensive suggestions they all got shot down with a limit of a tenner a head so that all could go. Its about saying goodbye and the more that can attend the better, £75 is frankly bonkers, so is £35 (plus the inevitable outfit).
Do talk to the school.

ElfOneself Fri 29-Dec-17 17:52:15

I would imagine my school would suggest to the organising parents that its better for all children to be included and the price is excluding some.
If that didn't work an alternative on a different date would be held on the school grounds for all children.

TabbyTigger Fri 29-Dec-17 17:57:20

YANBU this is ridiculous and really quite selfish of the other parents. My DCs’ primary just had an end of year disco in the school hall at no cost, and could buy drinks, food, and printed out photos when there. They managed to keep it cheap by just getting previous students/older siblings to be the “DJ” and “photographer”. DS18 and his friends formed a makeshift “band” to perform at DD13’s Y6 leavers disco.

islandchatter Fri 29-Dec-17 18:06:17

I am a Y6 teacher and we ask the children what they want to do to celebrate leaving primary school. They come up with 4-6 suggestions and we then give them a few days to discuss it and then get together to vote. I think the children get 2 votes each and we have a child-led discussion first about they they think certain ideas are good/not so good.
Some years have gone for disco-prom type event in the school hall - with a theme and mocktails. Others have done a day at the beach/laser quest/bowling/bbq/ bouncy castle day type things.
We aim to keep the total cost at £10 and ask the PTA to support if necessary to ensure that all children are able to come.
My favourites, although a bit more work for me, are the ones that take place on a school day and mean that everyone is included.
All children have a say and we simply let the parents know what has been decided.
Only one complaint in the past 6 years I have been at this school when one parent had bought the 'prom' dress in the January sales and kids voted to go to the beach instead - but is was sorted quickly and everyone was happy!

HolyShet Fri 29-Dec-17 18:07:40

After years of discos (which ended up with stupid £££ spent on outfits and limos for some but not others hmm) they sacked that off and had day trip to local seaside town, a mess about on the beach, lunch at Nandos and bowling & roller skating. School rather than competitive parents organised this for £22 per head.

The kids said it was amazing.

All that is really important to them at that point is to be together. So two tier half the class not able to go stuff will fall flat. YANBU

IncyWincyGrownUp Fri 29-Dec-17 18:10:14

Y6 organise their own disco here. They plan, shop, print tickets and so on. They love taking ownership of it.

I’d not even engage with a £35 per head day out. That’s for the parental egos, not the children.

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