Should I complain about this? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 20 Old 05-28-2003, 04:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't know if I'm over-reacting or not. A mother at ds's private school sells a line of products in order to be a SAHM, which I think is great. She is doing a sale's fair at ds's school all week -- and classroom space is being used to display the product. The school doesn't get any money, but it supports the school in a sense, because the school gets free product, depending on how much is sold.

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?
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#2 of 20 Old 05-28-2003, 05:14 PM
 
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I'd complain.
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#3 of 20 Old 05-28-2003, 05:20 PM
 
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Ditto. They'd hear from me --nicely, but for certain.
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#4 of 20 Old 05-28-2003, 10:41 PM
 
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I agree-- a complaint is in order. This week my son was subjected to a person coming to his class to try to give away "free kittens"--now this is not commercial in the usual sense, but my ds was in tears that we weren't going to be one of the "buyers." "But they're FREE Mom!!" I will be speaking to his teacher. It's still doing a hard sell to kids, who then may have parents that can't say no!

 
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#5 of 20 Old 05-28-2003, 10:48 PM
 
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You are doing your school a favour by pointing out that they've made an error in judgement.

I'd be furious. I'm sure you'll be much more dipolmatic!
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#6 of 20 Old 05-28-2003, 10:53 PM
 
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i'd complain and maybe try to suggest another way to " sell her business" but not in the school. not taking away class time for it!
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#7 of 20 Old 05-28-2003, 10:56 PM
 
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I"d complain for sure.

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!
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#8 of 20 Old 05-28-2003, 11:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The school did profit in terms of supplies. No $$ though.

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!

Grrrr...

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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#9 of 20 Old 05-29-2003, 02:13 AM
 
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Ewwww ick. I would complain this year. This is just totally inappropriate, and your son got hurt because of what they did. I say strike while the iron's hot, to lessen the chances that this becomes a tradition.

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#10 of 20 Old 05-29-2003, 02:16 PM
 
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Definately complain.

Totally inappropriate.

Nasty pressure.

Ewwww.
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#11 of 20 Old 05-30-2003, 10:25 AM
 
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oh yes-very inappropriate. sorry your son was upset-that would really burn me up!
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#12 of 20 Old 05-30-2003, 10:42 AM
 
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I would definitely complain ASAP. I'm sure lots of other parents feel the same way but may not speak up. Then again, there may also be lots of other parents that are planning to follow this woman's lead and insist on equal time to sell whatever they're into next year. The administration has set an evil precedent, it needs to be nipped in the bud!
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#13 of 20 Old 05-30-2003, 12:34 PM
 
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Complain!

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.
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#14 of 20 Old 06-01-2003, 07:22 PM
 
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Definitely complain. What a waste of instructional time!

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?
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#15 of 20 Old 06-06-2003, 09:43 PM
 
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They had the book fair at my dd's school (she's in kindergarden) and I was also upset about a wish list coming home. I let her buy 2 books because of the pressure and one was a good one about a holiday that is hard to find (we are Jewish) but the other one was really stupid and I was mad I wasted the money. I told her no on two other books and she was not happy about it, but I guess it is like any time she begs for something advertised on tv, at the store, in her friend's house. I just keep teaching her that these things cost money and we need to carefully choose how to spend what we have. We usually buy books/toys at garage sales and use our local library a LOT.

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.

Miriam
Mom to two daughters born in 1997 and 2000
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#16 of 20 Old 06-08-2003, 04:22 AM
 
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I am assuming it was books for sale. My dd1's school had something similar to this - offered books for sale to the parents and the "hostess credits" for free books were given to the teachers to buy books for the classroom libraries. It was ok with me - some of us bought, some didn't.

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.
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#17 of 20 Old 06-09-2003, 11:04 AM
 
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I'd complain. This is out of line. If you don't complain, expect to see more of it.
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#18 of 20 Old 07-10-2003, 10:39 PM
 
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I am disgusted by any form of solicitation that is uninvited, especially to children. That shouldn't ever happen in a school. What's next? Allowing soda machines to be in schools so that the school can receive a bit of free money with each purchase? Oh yeah... they already do that. Appalling.
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#19 of 20 Old 07-15-2003, 01:23 PM
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Yet another vote for complain.

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.)

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#20 of 20 Old 07-23-2003, 04:43 PM
 
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who cares is someone is WOHM or SAHM, it is not appropriate.
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