Author Topic: Did I overstep?  (Read 8311 times)

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gramma dishes

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #75 on: February 24, 2013, 12:55:22 PM »


She could have easily handed the TY note to the child like the child handed her the present.

Not really so easily.  Other students, who may not have given Teacher a gift, would feel left out if they saw her handing a special note to just your child.  And a Thank You note can be written, addressed and mailed in 'off hours' while handing a note to your child during school time is ... well, taking up school time for something that's actually personal business.

White Lotus

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #76 on: February 24, 2013, 01:29:36 PM »
OP is fine.  Sending a thank you note for a gift received is normal etiquette and something that should be taught.  This isn't spam, a survey, or an ad for someone's (or their relative's) side business, which would all cross the line. This is common courtesy, and I would appreciate it as support for and modeling of decent manners.  I wouldn't want such notes handed out for all the reasons mentioned.  Of course the schools my children attended, and therefore the teachers, had our address and phones.  I had the teachers', too.  The students, however, did not have that information, again for reasons cited.
We trust teachers with our children; we ought to be able to trust them to use contact information appropriately -- which thank you notes are -- and slam hard the few who go out of bounds -- which we never experienced -- rather than say "occasionally someone steps over the line, so we have to say never go anywhere near it."  That would be letting the rude rule, and that is not a Good Thing.

TootsNYC

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #77 on: February 24, 2013, 02:25:39 PM »
I really  do not get anyone who is uncomfortable with the teacher having the address.  Or is it the fact they got it from the school list?  Would it have made you feel better if she got the address from her home phone book (you know, the thing we have had delivered yearly for DECADES - and I still get them - that had your name and address in it)?  It's a thank you note for crying out loud.  Students, especially younger ones, are not so good about always delivering things to their parents so it makes sense to mail it.  Especially if the gift was given on the last day before break and it was going to be weeks before seeing them again.

I am not uncomfortable with the teacher having the address. I am uncomfortable with her using it for things that are not related to my childs education and/or related to school events.

She could have easily handed the TY note to the child like the child handed her the present.

Was the gift not related to your child's education?

SiotehCat

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #78 on: February 24, 2013, 02:33:58 PM »
I really  do not get anyone who is uncomfortable with the teacher having the address.  Or is it the fact they got it from the school list?  Would it have made you feel better if she got the address from her home phone book (you know, the thing we have had delivered yearly for DECADES - and I still get them - that had your name and address in it)?  It's a thank you note for crying out loud.  Students, especially younger ones, are not so good about always delivering things to their parents so it makes sense to mail it.  Especially if the gift was given on the last day before break and it was going to be weeks before seeing them again.

I am not uncomfortable with the teacher having the address. I am uncomfortable with her using it for things that are not related to my childs education and/or related to school events.

She could have easily handed the TY note to the child like the child handed her the present.

Was the gift not related to your child's education?

I don't think so. I don't see how gift cards to Starbucks and mini cheesecakes are related to his education. Unless the gifts are in hopes that the teacher will work harder because she has received them or that she will give the kids that gifted her better grades.

TootsNYC

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #79 on: February 24, 2013, 02:35:44 PM »
Oh. Wow.


Then, is the teacher a personal friend of yours?

(Or, do you never give presents to your kids teachers? In which case you don't really have an accurate perspective on the discussion, do you? You wouldn't have any problem here, because there wouldn't be a thank-you note to send)

gramma dishes

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #80 on: February 24, 2013, 02:52:07 PM »

I don't think so. I don't see how gift cards to Starbucks and mini cheesecakes are related to his education. Unless the gifts are in hopes that the teacher will work harder because she has received them or that she will give the kids that gifted her better grades.

I assure you that the overwhelming majority of teachers don't need the incentive of 'gifts' of any kind to work "harder".  They are working as hard as they can and then some.  And I really doubt that any teacher is going to alter any child's evaluation based on having received a gift from that child or his/her family.

If anything, it's a recognition on the part of the parents that this is a person who spends a great deal of time with their child and is important and influential in his/her life.  It's more of a Thank You than an incentive to "work harder"!

TootsNYC

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #81 on: February 24, 2013, 02:56:36 PM »
I also assure you that the vast majority of parents/students who give gifts to teachers do not do so with the intent of encouraging the teacher to work harder.

They intend to say thank you, and to offer recognition on the hard work already done.


katycoo

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #82 on: February 24, 2013, 02:58:35 PM »
and i am curious - don't teachers visit their students homes, as least once a year? I don't live in the US so I don't know what the norm is there.

I'm in Australia - never ever ever.  This would be VERY odd.

I think you are fine in sending Thank you notes to the home.  When my daughter has given gifts, this is what has always been done.

I don't know what grade you teach, but if you were to hand these out in class, I see a whole other can of worms opening.

"Mrs. Smith, what did you give Susie?  A thank you card you say?  For what?  Oh, she got you a gift?  I did not know we were supposed to get you gifts?  or I could not afford to get you a gift.  Sniff, sniff"...

And if my child was a student of yours, why wouldn't you have the address?   Or why couldn't you get the address if needed for something like this?  A person's address is not private knowledge like a phone number.  Anyone can get my address and send me something in the mail. 

I would not complain or be upset about a Thank you.  Surveys or anything else, most definitly.

This is why a white lie can be a good thing. "Its just a note for Susie's mother. It's private and not your concern."

jaxsue

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #83 on: February 24, 2013, 03:12:54 PM »

I don't think so. I don't see how gift cards to Starbucks and mini cheesecakes are related to his education. Unless the gifts are in hopes that the teacher will work harder because she has received them or that she will give the kids that gifted her better grades.

I assure you that the overwhelming majority of teachers don't need the incentive of 'gifts' of any kind to work "harder".  They are working as hard as they can and then some.  And I really doubt that any teacher is going to alter any child's evaluation based on having received a gift from that child or his/her family.

If anything, it's a recognition on the part of the parents that this is a person who spends a great deal of time with their child and is important and influential in his/her life.  It's more of a Thank You than an incentive to "work harder"!

This. We gave Xmas and end-of-year gifts to teachers. We never saw them as bribes for harder work or better grades!

snappylt

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #84 on: February 24, 2013, 03:57:38 PM »
As a former classroom teacher, I want to add my two cents.  (I taught upper elementary grades over twenty years ago, in mostly self-contained classrooms.)

Each year I would mail a welcome letter two or three days before school started to each student at his/her home address.  I was not required to do this, but my principal had mentioned that he thought it was a nice idea.  I cannot remember for sure, but I think we could send the welcome letter out through the school's postage meter.

I also mailed a personal thank you note (always using my own postage stamp) to each student who gave me a Christmas gift or end-of-the-year gift.  I thought it was the right thing to do because I was modeling politeness and modeling correct letter writing.  Besides, I thought  most kids didn't receive much mail and would appreciate a personal thank you note.

I was so busy during the school days that I would write those thank you notes after school or at home in the evening.  I still think it was the right thing to have done, but if I had known that an individual child's family did not want their child to receive a thank you note through the mail, I certainly would have respected their instructions.

[I did have mixed feelings about receiving gifts from students.  I was being paid to teach; no gifts were needed, and indeed, I think I would have preferred to not receive gifts, because I wouldn't have wanted anyone to think that there was any preferential treatment (because there wasn't).

When I got married and had kids of my own I did not give gifts to my children's teachers.  What I did do is to write thank you letters to their teachers, mentioning specific things my sons had learned in their classes that I was thankful for.]

So, OP, I think you were fine.

GSNW

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #85 on: February 24, 2013, 05:37:29 PM »

I don't think so. I don't see how gift cards to Starbucks and mini cheesecakes are related to his education.

I think if you don't think those things make appropriate gestures or if gestures at all aren't appropriate, then you probably shouldn't give gifts, and maybe you don't.  The majority do not, and when I look at the 38 faces looking back at me in a single period, I don't think of them in terms of "gift, no gift." 

Or maybe I'm the one that should be offended!  It is awfully presumptuous for a parent/student to think I might like coffee, cheesecake, or the homemade bookmarks I got with chemistry jokes on them.  Assuming I even drink coffee or eat cheesecake, or read books, is quite an intrusion into my personal time away from school.    ::)


bonyk

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #86 on: February 24, 2013, 05:57:19 PM »
Funny, I always send the TY notes home with the kids, and I always feel guilty for not mailing them.  I remember how much I loved getting TY notes mailed to me by my teachers.  It never occurred to me that someone would find that objectionable.

Roe

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #87 on: February 24, 2013, 07:02:29 PM »
Unless the gifts are in hopes that the teacher will work harder because she has received them or that she will give the kids that gifted her better grades.

This is quite insulting.

kareng57

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #88 on: February 24, 2013, 07:39:46 PM »


She could have easily handed the TY note to the child like the child handed her the present.

Not really so easily.  Other students, who may not have given Teacher a gift, would feel left out if they saw her handing a special note to just your child.  And a Thank You note can be written, addressed and mailed in 'off hours' while handing a note to your child during school time is ... well, taking up school time for something that's actually personal business.


IME teachers handed notes to students for their parents all the time - although it's true that I'm talking about nearly 20 years ago when email was less common.  For example, when DS #2 was in grade 2 we found him using a ruler (to add and subtract) for his math homework.  He told us that his teacher had suggested it, and we wrote a note asking her to verify it.  She sent a note back confirming it.  I really don't think that spending a few seconds to put a note in a child's backpack is "personal business".

But if a teacher had sent something to me via regular mail I don't think it would have even occurred to me to be upset.

*inviteseller

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Re: Did I overstep?
« Reply #89 on: February 24, 2013, 07:45:29 PM »
Unless the gifts are in hopes that the teacher will work harder because she has received them or that she will give the kids that gifted her better grades.

This is quite insulting.

POD for me and all the other parents who want to honestly thank a teacher for taking care of the most precious things in our life