The Independent is reporting on gift-giving to teachers with concerns being expressed over expensive gifts and class-wide presents…
…Competitive parents who want to give the best present have raised the stakes in classrooms across the country. Teachers have reported being given strange and extravagant gifts including a Tiffany bracelet, £200 of opera house vouchers and a brace of pheasants.
Other extravagant presents included a Mulberry handbag, an Yves St Laurent scarf and gift vouchers worth £1000.
Concern has also been raised about the trend towards class-wide presents where every child is asked to contribute £5 or £10 towards one large gift from the whole class.
The Association of Teachers and Lecturers warned that teachers gift-giving was becoming over commercialised and competitive and said that teachers’ most treasured gifts were cards or pictures made by pupils.
The ATL said the most popular gifts among staff were personalised items such as paintings done by a student of their teacher, or hand-made jewellery and cards…
The most common gift for teachers is chocolates, with 85 per cent of staff having received some, a survey for the union found. Other popular presents were flowers or plants, alcohol, toiletries and mugs. Most presents cost less than £5 and the vast majority less than £10.
Dr Mary Bousted, General Secretary of ATL, said: “Although most staff like getting presents from their pupils to show their hard work is appreciated, they don’t expect them. Staff certainly don’t want their pupils to feel they have to give presents and feel humiliated if they can’t afford to do so.
“Staff are just as delighted by a handmade gift or card – the thought really does count.”…
No doubt the vast majority of gifts are modest and appropriate, but do schools need to set a clear policy for parents, making it clear, for example, that gifts are not necessary, home made is ideal and any costing above £5 will not be accepted? What do you think? Please share in the comments or via Twitter and take part in our poll…[yop_poll id=”240″]
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