Tis the Season

December 14, 2006 1 min read

How much is too much? That’s the question in one Boston-area district, where a committee is considering a $50 limit on gifts from students (and their parents) to teachers. The new policy at schools in Hopkinton, Massachusetts, would not cap group gifts. In other nearby districts, gifts to teachers are frowned upon or banned, and grateful students are encouraged to write letters of appreciation or make donations to the school instead. Concerns include conflicts of interest and inappropriate gifts, like the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Calendar one teacher received. And at some schools, wealthy parents go overboard with large cash gifts others can’t match. The teacher-gift pitfalls are numerous, but gifts remain a nice way for students to show their appreciation to hard-working and low-paid educators. What’s your take? Should the tradition be reined in, or even eliminated?

A version of this news article first appeared in the Web Watch blog.