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AIBU?

To think this school trip is badly misjudged

237 replies

MaoamAddict · 25/01/2023 22:30

Have name changed as the situation is very specific. DC is in year 1 at a lovely school, but we've just received notice that a school 'trip' will be taking place to a local food bank. The school have asked for us to pay for transport (not a problem) and have gone on to say that the children will be packing food, handing out food parcels and seeing behind the scenes of a large local food bank.

We live in a middle class area with a minimal number of DC on pupil premium but there are certainly families within school community who are on the breadline and may have used food banks. I think it's fucking crass for the school to be using a food bank as a spectacle?! We donate weekly financially and feminine hygiene products, but the school don't seem to have thought this through at all, what if one or more of the DC in the 3 year 1 classes have visited that food bank?! How do I word these concerns without being 'that' parent? Or AIBU and overthinking?

The 'trip' is designed to fit in with a superhero topic at school - the food bank volunteers are being framed as the superheroes (tenuous link?) the food bank volunteers are amazing, but this feels wrong on so many levels.

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Dacadactyl · 25/01/2023 22:31

Personally I think you're overthinking it.

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Princesspollyyy · 25/01/2023 22:32

I think it's a good thing.

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Mammyloveswine · 25/01/2023 22:33

What?! Because you're in middle class area children shouldn't see that people might need help with food?! Ffs!!

Not crass at all and actually very good of the school!!

Just like having firefighters in or nurses or dentists who bring in toothbrushes for all!!

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helloisitmeyourelookingfor · 25/01/2023 22:34

You are over thinking it

Also it will be handled positively on the basis of some people might need a little bit more help than others, the food bank is a good way of helping because....

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MajorCarolDanvers · 25/01/2023 22:34

There's nothing to be ashamed about using a good bank.

Educating children about food banks and why they are needed is not a bad thing.

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modgepodge · 25/01/2023 22:34

My school did a trip to the local foodbank with y6 children to get an understanding of what they do - we talk about it at the harvest festival every year, but every year the children seem to think the collected food is sent off to Afghanistan/Syria/Ukraine, or possibly given to local homeless people - no understanding that there are people in paid work in houses who use foodbanks. It opened their eyes so I think it was worthwhile. We are a private school though so the chances of anyone using the foodbank are slim to none I’d have thought, not sure if that makes a difference.

Presumably any parents who aren’t comfortable with their child attending for the reasons you state could opt out of the trip? Im sure the teachers would be understanding of this.

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LastOfTheChristmasWine · 25/01/2023 22:34

It does feel a bit off to me, but then I've no involvement with food banks beyond popping some food in the collection point at the supermarket

Given the superheroes theme, wouldn't a visit from a policeman be more traditional - or even a visit to a farm where they can learn about where food comes from and the superheroes who keep us all fed?

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MaoamAddict · 25/01/2023 22:34

No, please don't think this is me not wanting my Dc 'exposed' to the food bank, we donate weekly, speak to DC about how fortunate we are etc. my worry is that if I was a vulnerable person using a food bank, I wouldn't want to see 90 5-6 year olds there for a school trip like it was entertainment?!

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Abasnada · 25/01/2023 22:36

I think it’s fine to be honest. You can’t just not do things incase it upsets a small minority of children who might use the food bank themselves.

If anything it opened the childrens eyes up to the world around them and hopefully teaches them all that there’s no shame in having to use a good bank.

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Dacadactyl · 25/01/2023 22:37

@MaoamAddict I suspect the kids will be behind the scenes and not out in front of the service users. But of you're concerned, ring the food bank to find out how they manage it.

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Abasnada · 25/01/2023 22:38

People love kids. You’re projecting the idea that food bank use is some kind of shameful embarrassing activity. It might be for some people but the reality is I think everyone understands.

The kids aren’t going to make people feel ashamed they are just going to go in and help out.

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Etinoxaurus · 25/01/2023 22:38

ok if they’re behind the scenes but very not ok if they’ll have any contact with clients.

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avamiah · 25/01/2023 22:38

What happened to going to the museum or zoo?
My daughter is in secondary school now but I always remember when she was younger they went to museums and London zoo.

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DarkDarkNight · 25/01/2023 22:38

I don’t like the idea at all. Some people may be very private or feel embarrassed about having to use a food bank. They shouldn’t have to put up with a bunch of kids hanging around. It’s like a poverty safari.

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BendingSpoons · 25/01/2023 22:39

It could be a bit awkward. I could imagine a 5yo spotting a neighbour or family friend there and saying afterwards 'I saw you on my school trip'. Whilst this would be innocent it could cause embarrassment.

I feel a 'behind the scenes' look with the volunteers showing them around and talking about what they do would be good. Having them interact with people using the food bank seems like a nice idea but could be awkward for those there. Also 90 kids at once?! That's loads!

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MrsSkylerWhite · 25/01/2023 22:39

I think children ought to learn about the lives of others. Don’t see the problem.

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DeliberatelyObtuse · 25/01/2023 22:39

I'm sure it will be handled properly

Your kid's school won't be the first to visit

It won't be a zoo

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Princesspollyyy · 25/01/2023 22:39

It's not entertainment, they are seeing how the food bank works.

You're definitely overthinking it. Maybe you should volunteer instead of just donating.

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MaoamAddict · 25/01/2023 22:40

@avamiah this is my secondary objection, school has been very crap with trips for this year group post covid - and this feels like it ticks the 'trip' box. They don't seem to put any effort in to much. I fully support teacher strikes before I get flamed

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Etinoxaurus · 25/01/2023 22:40

Abasnada · 25/01/2023 22:38

People love kids. You’re projecting the idea that food bank use is some kind of shameful embarrassing activity. It might be for some people but the reality is I think everyone understands.

The kids aren’t going to make people feel ashamed they are just going to go in and help out.

People using foodbanks are not living their best lives. They’re often embarrassed and anxious and just want to through the whole process as swiftly as possibly and with as little interaction as possible.

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edwinbear · 25/01/2023 22:40

I can see the intention is good, but I can also imagine the kids might be embarrassed if one of the volunteers recognises a child from being a visitor/recipient or if one of the DC’s family members comes in whilst the child is there. I think that’s where you’re coming from OP?

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Princesspollyyy · 25/01/2023 22:40

avamiah · 25/01/2023 22:38

What happened to going to the museum or zoo?
My daughter is in secondary school now but I always remember when she was younger they went to museums and London zoo.

Schools don't just visit zoos and museums you know!! There's only so many of those.

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BendingSpoons · 25/01/2023 22:41

Abasnada · 25/01/2023 22:38

People love kids. You’re projecting the idea that food bank use is some kind of shameful embarrassing activity. It might be for some people but the reality is I think everyone understands.

The kids aren’t going to make people feel ashamed they are just going to go in and help out.

People shouldn't feel ashamed and I'd like to think everyone understands and doesn't judge. That doesn't mean people don't feel ashamed or embarrassed though. If that means someone avoids coming next time, that's dreadful.

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TwilightSilhouette · 25/01/2023 22:41

I highly doubt the kids will be ogling the people visiting to collect food. They will be shown around behind the scenes.
I think it’s a great idea by the school. Our school have learnt about Food banks, Water Aid, Fair trade and toilet twinning this year. All good stuff.

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MaoamAddict · 25/01/2023 22:42

It's specified on the trip information sheets that they're packaging up food parcels and helping to 'hand them out', not sure how that's made it through a risk assessment TBH but they will be interacting with the food bank's service users.

To the PP who suggested I volunteer, I already volunteer with other charities - but thank you Hmm

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