My big problem -- they took time out of class today to march my son's whole class through the fair, and had them pick out the things they liked and make "wish lists" to give their parents. My ds broke down in tears when I told him we are not buying anything off his list. The "wish list" process really hiked his hopes up.
I really strongly object to what happened on so many levels. But my biggest complaint is that he was subjected to advertising at school -- a school we pay a good bit of money already to send him too. The "wish list" seems very high pressure, and very manipulative. I mean honestly, I have to reduce my child to tears in order to avoid shelling out $$ to this other mother! It sucks.
So, do you think I'm over-reacting? Or should I complain to the administrator who gave permission for this?
mayyyyyybe I'd feel a little different if she were pledging her profit to the classroom for supplies or whatever, but from your post it sounds like that is not the case.
highly offensive, and cruel to the kids.
it is bad enought @ my ds's private school, all the cookie-dough sales, magazine sales, etc etc. but at least there the profit goes to the school!
Even still, fundraisers are supposed to be completely optional. It is hard to say they are optional on the one hand, and then on the other hand -- try to hard sell my 6 year old!
I still haven't decided what to do for sure... Maybe just wait until next year, and then speak up about it at one of the fundraiser planning meetings... At least then it will be proactive, and not just whining about it after the fact.
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These days, if a school is going to do its job properly, it really must work on developing media and advertising literacy/savvy among students -- one thing that children have a hard time doing is distinguishing advertising from other, 'legit' material, so they take its message about what they 'ought' to do very seriously. Schools have a responsibility to help children to draw this line, not to blur it further and thus contribute to children's exploitation. And, hello, captive audienc? Yuck.
Our school does Scholastic book fairs and there's the same set up: kids are paraded in front of the books and get to make a wish list. It's totally wrong, especially in a school where 45% of the children get the free lunch and probably can't afford the books.
I'm sorry your ds was so upset. What was the product she sells? Toys?
I think at the least, the school should prewarn you and give you the option to opt out of parading your child through the items.
Mom to two daughters born in 1997 and 2000
BUT they didn't have our kids make wish lists! That is the inappropriate part IMO. I would talk to the person in charge of fundraising and also the person who is in charge of the library committee. Someone made the decision to parade the kids through and make wish lists. That is the part I would focus on. There are always going to be fundraisers but they should be done in a better manner.
I feel so sad for your son. My kids have come home with "wish lists" from the book fair at their school, and I always try to find them something similar at the library, if they are really interested in the book. Sometimes, though, its just peer pressure, and they feel like they have to fill it out.
Often, its the gimmicky book things, with like little toys attached, that they are attracted to. I usually point out that those are outrageously overpriced, and that the toys can be had at the dollar store, for a fraction of the price. Or we can go to the used book store, and turn in old books, and get some new things.
my kids are used to this, so it doesn't come as such a shock. So sorry about your little guy.
Oh yeah, one year I voluntered at the fair, and got to spend a $5 certificate for my work. Got something totally lame and overpriced.
(I also have a bad feeling about it being mainly for profit for the mom running it. At least my school got alot of books from the fair, but not real sure about how the school would benefit under her rules.)