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ugh - room mother and suggested giving amount for christmas gift to teachers - Page 3

post #41 of 58

I would decline every time.She really should ASK if anyone would like to participate,and then you all decide on the  amount you are willing(or able) to contribute. In our house every penny counts,and I know daycare is not cheap.

post #42 of 58

I would cease to badmouth the room mom until i see the note/wording, as maybe the note can be taken many different ways by different people.  DH is always asking me to read an email from a client and gets pissy about their tone, when I dont read a tone at all!  

 

That being said, a "suggested amount" can be helpful for others...as we often want to know that we are not being over-indulgent, nor cheap, compared to other parents.  and depending on the area, and the socio-economics of the families, $15 may be very much appropriate.  

 

We are planning on making bird seed wreaths for both the teacher and the aide.  I'm hoping they will display them outside the room windows, so the kids can benefit from seeing the "seeds" of their labor :)  That being said, I have purchased gifts for their teachers before, and I always tend to spend between $10-20 per teacher, when the kids were in 2 separate classes.  Now that they are in the same montessori class, it makes it so much easier.  We are also buying one item for their classroom.

post #43 of 58

I'm a room mom in a pretty LCOL area with the highest unemployment rate in the nation and I would NEVER ask parents to donate money like that for a gift! Where we live, it is common for parents to buy/make their own child's gifts for the teacher.  The only thing we ask parents to do is to donate their time, or supplies/food for parties and the like.  I would do what others have suggested and tell the room mom that you already have plans for a teacher gift and not think twice about it!

post #44 of 58

The room moms at my kids' elementary school just seem to send home notes asking for donations (treats, craft supplies, drinks, not $$) for a class fall and winter party. No one ever collects $$ for a teacher gift. So you aren't necessarily facing a long time of this!

 

I did go through this when my children were at nursery school. I would either get the teachers something on my own or chip in whatever I had planned to spend. I can't imagine room mom would say anything to you if you give her less than $15, of course, you never know! But just don't let it get to you.

 

And this is OT, but can I just say I'm amazed at whoever  (Tigerchild?) said her child contributes $15 - $20 to pay for an extra field trip, party supplies and a teacher gift. Bussing costs are outrageous here and I'm in a very inexpensive place to live in OH. Last year my son's kindergarten had a bus for maybe 3 hours to take them to the local university (about 3 miles from school), drive them to two stops on campus and then come back after lunch and take them home. It cost like $350, which would pretty much work out to about $15 per child for a class of around 25. To go out of town on an all day trip, it's actually cheaper to get a charter bus (about $800).

post #45 of 58

$15! wow sounds like a LOT to me! i spent $10 on each of my fam's kids and i feel broke! i only spent $40 on DD...

post #46 of 58

My son attends preschool 2 days a week, and our room mother asked for $25 per teacher, so total $50, for xmas gifts for them, which I think is a little high. I am not in NE, but rather large city in Midwest.

post #47 of 58

Well... I've been the one asked to collect for a group gift - both when it came to school and at work. The amount I've usually gotten from either has in no way provided enough for even a reasonable gift card. When our boss' father passed? I ordered an Edible Arrangement for $70. With 15 employees, we were talking $5/person. I got $20. Total. So ate the cost myself. So yeah - suggesting an amount makes sense to me.

post #48 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by elus0814 View Post

$15 doesn't seem all that bad to me (sorry) but I'm from New York where gift giving is a big deal. When my daughter was in preschool each parent was asked to give a minimum of $25 for each of the two teachers. This was in a class of 18 kids at a private school. She was only there three mornings per week with another class there the other two days. So, now that I add it up, the gifts for both teachers was a total of $900 at a minimum (although some of the gifts were items for the classroom meaning my child benefited from the gifts of previous classes). But, as I said, this is common for the east coast/northeast. 


$900!?!?!  I have not dealt with 'school gifts'  in a lot of years, but I have kids re entering the school system this year, and no way do I see a teacher needing a nearly 500dollar gift no matter where they live.  Thankfully here in Australia, gifts are not so insane like they are in the states (and boy, I do NOT miss that!)  I don't do gifts for everyone under the sun... my kids, neice/nephew, IL's and that's about it.  So my kids' teacher isn't even going to hit my radar, sorry.  I'm just jaw2.gif  at how out of control gift giving is if someone really feels the need for a childs teacher to get a 450 dollar gift :( 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Catubodua 

  no, it's $15 per teacher, per child.  there are two teachers in each classroom, with 8 children in a classroom.  that means each teacher would be getting a $120 gift.

 

and, yes, sorry i get ungrateful when i'm getting shakendown by someone.



I think I'd feel about the same in your situation.  For goodness sake ask parents to chip in 2 bucks each and get them a gift certificate for a pedicure or something decadent like that.. it does not have to be $$$$$ to be appreciated!

 


 

post #49 of 58

I don't get this since we homeschool but Dh does at work.

 

He says every month he gets approached by co-workers who ask him to donate to such and such a cause, usually its because someone is going maternity leave and the office would like to get that person a baby gift.  He did this for quite a few years prior to having kids himself.  Each time he would donate $10 or so per cause.

 

Then he/we had Dd.  NO ONE did anything for him!  He said he felt so bad about it that he mentioned it to a co-worker who in turn mentioned to someone higher up.  In the end he/we ended up with a baby sleeper outfit and a vase of flowers for me.  This is in an office with 50+ workers!

 

Dh later admitted that it was a lame move on his co-workers' part as it was such a HUGE discrepancy to what is usually given to the women co-workers when they have babies.  In those cases the women come away with baby swings, cribs, AND gift certificates etc. 

 

Needless to say Dh doesn't contribute to such things anymore.

post #50 of 58

I think it's fine to leave the room mom a note with an appreciation for her hard work, but that you've already spent your holiday money on personal gifts.

 

Personally, I prefer some kind of suggested amount, although I am not crazy about any kind of assuming that everyone can manage it.

 

I guess I don't see it as a huge problem to have a culture of a generous cash bonus for teachers (in areas where families can manage it--here, where many can't, it's much more common to have it be an individual thing; in DS's school I think only a handful of students brought anything). We certainly have a bonus culture in other fields that pay better/don't add much to society. I am guessing that the countries in which this is not the custom pay their teachers more like the professionals they are.

 

ETA, I mean, I wish we had a culture in which teachers were compensated like professionals, and no ginormous gifts. But given the imbalance in how important teachers are, how hard they work, how women in general are undercompensated, and teachers particularly so (and in some states especially so), trying to patch together a generous chunk in communities where many parents can afford to do so, this seems like a kind impulse on balance; although I do wish the execution were less thoughtless. 


Edited by domesticidyll - 12/5/10 at 9:15pm
post #51 of 58
"My son attends preschool 2 days a week, and our room mother asked for $25 per teacher, so total $50, for xmas gifts for them, which I think is a little high. I am not in NE, but rather large city in Midwest."

Pushy. Insensitive. Vulgar. soapbox.gif


My goal for "my" teacher this year is a $100 gift card to "a place that sells toilet paper" - that's what she requested when I asked her, and I am so very glad that I asked because last year the teacher wanted a Starbucks card. I think that "my" parents will pony up and make that possible. But I would seriously take the $$ out of my own holiday budget before I tried to extract a specific amount from anybody, because I do not know diddley about their financial situations. What if they just got laid off or have cancer or something, and I'm hitting them up for $20 that they don't have to spend on frills? I truly don't understand how people work up the nerve to ask for suggested donations that aren't the $2-5 office baby-shower pool or something like that.
post #52 of 58

Ok....I get it now.  I was thinking it was $15 total....yeah well......$120 for a gift for EACH teacher is a lot.   ummm..not happening.

post #53 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtiger View Post

Well... I've been the one asked to collect for a group gift - both when it came to school and at work. The amount I've usually gotten from either has in no way provided enough for even a reasonable gift card. When our boss' father passed? I ordered an Edible Arrangement for $70. With 15 employees, we were talking $5/person. I got $20. Total. So ate the cost myself. So yeah - suggesting an amount makes sense to me.



$5 doesn't seem unreasonable to me, but some people need every $5 they've got and it's just not up to you to decide how they spend their money. I would be annoyed if someone made a unilateral decision to spend $70 and then notified everyone of how much they owed to cover the cost. A better way to go about it would have been to do the collection first and then choose a gift within the given price range. With the $20 you collected plus however much you wanted to contribute, you could have gotten a small floral arrangement instead of buying something more expensive and then feeling resentful about having to cover the difference. 

 

And what's wrong with a $20 gift card for a birthday or whatever? I'd be happy to receive that from my coworkers, and would think it was above and beyond what they needed to do for me (which is nothing). 

post #54 of 58

The way the email we received was worded we were told that the last two years each teacher received roughly $400 (implying that they wanted to collect the same amt this year). This is my son's first year in school, but I find this a little crazy. My son doesn't even like his teachers that much (we are considering switching schools entirely next year) and like I said, he only goes 2 days a week. We can afford to do it, I guess, but I guess my thought is, do I want to spend $25 on each of them? Ten or 15 dollars seems more than adequate. That said, I totally see teachers not wanting a million bottles of cheap bath bubbles and scented candles and mugs and such.

post #55 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by mumm View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by vbactivist View Post


the good news is you don't really have 18 years.  there usually aren't room mothers after grade school (so beyond 5th grade :)



No, after that a perky teacher's pet (usually a girl or group of girls) does the organizing and YOUR CHILD will feel the pressure!

 Ugh :(
 

post #56 of 58

Question....do the teachers tend to use the money to improve the classroom?  That could be a differentiator to me.  I know at our school, if they receive gift cards, its usually used to purchase classroom items.

 

But yeah, 2 days/week....give $10.

post #57 of 58

If you don't want to give, I'd definitely send her a polite note saying you must decline as you have already purchased a gift (or plan to purchase a gift).

 

She should have left the amount open.

 

I'm a room mother for both my kids' classes, and I'm collecting money for a gift for the kindergarten teacher.  The other room mother and I hope that parents will donate (we said "any amount is great"), and then we'll buy a generic gift card from our school's gift card program.  (So the teacher can pick from local grocery stores, restaurants, shops, etc.)

 

Maybe instead of getting too many coffee mugs filled with candy or potted plants she can get something she'd really need/use.  (Not that there's anything wrong with coffee mugs and potted plants, but a teacher friend of mine is always giving away such items after Christmas because she gets so many from her students that she can't possibly keep them all herself.) 

post #58 of 58

If you don't want to donate, just don't.  Or give a lesser amount, if that works for you.

 

I don't mind this kind of thing at all if it's clear that it's voluntary and there's no pressure.

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