How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

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hmw
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How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by hmw »

My 11-year old goes to a private elemenary school. One of the parents is organizing to buy some group Xmas gifts for 4 teachers who teach the kids. I asked her what the suggested amount should be but she wouldn't give me a straight answer. :?

I am thinking about $25 to $50 per teacher so somewhere between $100 to $200 altogether. Am I in the right ball park?

Thanks
miamivice
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by miamivice »

$0 per teacher
Kookaburra
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by Kookaburra »

Are they good teachers?
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epicureme
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by epicureme »

$25 per teacher seems appropriate. Nationally, burnout is high among teachers whose job is as difficult as it is invaluable. I'd describe this not just as a gift but an investment in something beyond oneself.

[Edit] giving too much to teachers ($50, $100, etc.) could also be problematic; remember, teachers have evaluative authority over your children, and should feel free to provide accurate grades (good and bad) without having to feel indebted by an excessive gift. Best wishes.
Last edited by epicureme on Wed Nov 23, 2022 1:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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nanciT
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by nanciT »

I think this is very individual and does depend on the teacher.

I am a nurse who actually became a nurse educator in an ROP program my last 12 years.After teaching for a year I nearly left, it was far more difficult and time consuming than I ever imagined. I started to think back on my kids teachers and wished I had appreciated them far more back then. I honestly had no idea how difficult teaching is and standing there with 35 students each day.

My students were all seniors in high school who planned on going into Nursing. Each year about 75% of my students brought gifts of thanks usually at Christmas and year end. Some wrote letters, others small gift cards or small items like a candle. For me, it meant a great deal. I retired last year and I still have students contacting me via email and text keeping me updated on their nursing experiences. I just received an email today from at student in Medical School at Boston Med. He graduated 5 years ago.

My point is if the teacher is one that your student and you appreciate, a small gift is always appreciated.
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Beensabu
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by Beensabu »

hmw wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 11:52 pm One of the parents is organizing to buy some group Xmas gifts for 4 teachers who teach the kids.
A group Xmas gift or a cash Xmas bonus?

Sometimes, these parent organizers pocket a bit of cash. I'm pretty sure.

Give what you want. Assume it makes it to the teachers. Or give to them directly.
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runner3081
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by runner3081 »

The room moms collect $30-$50 per student. The teacher walks away with around $500 for Christmas in gift cards/gifts and another $500 for teacher appreciation week.
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TJat
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by TJat »

runner3081 wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 8:08 am The room moms collect $30-$50 per student. The teacher walks away with around $500 for Christmas in gift cards/gifts and another $500 for teacher appreciation week.
Private school?
hmw wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 11:52 pm My 11-year old goes to a private elemenary school. One of the parents is organizing to buy some group Xmas gifts for 4 teachers who teach the kids. I asked her what the suggested amount should be but she wouldn't give me a straight answer. :?

I am thinking about $25 to $50 per teacher so somewhere between $100 to $200 altogether. Am I in the right ball park?

Thanks
My wife is a Public schoolteacher in a modest/diverse district and has never received cash and I think would be uncomfortable if she did. She does get coffee shop gift cards ($10 or so) or trinkets like water bottles, coffee mugs, magnets, one time we got champagne flutes (? Lol), etc.
yoga
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by yoga »

$25 gift card to a place like Target. That way if the teacher is uncomfortable with gifts, it can be used for classroom supplies.

I'm not a fan of group collection but recognize I'm weird.
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enad
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by enad »

You're not obligated to give a gift, in fact check with the school first to see if a teacher can legally accept a gift and if so what the amount of the gift can be whether it be an individual or class gift. For more information, check out this article, titled Gifts for teachers are problematic.
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Nowizard
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by Nowizard »

If it's a group gift with someone organizing it, then the amount you choose. If directly, a GC, as has been suggested in a chosen amount. Definitely, give something to those who have about as much influence on the future of your children as anyone other than family.

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oldfatguy
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by oldfatguy »

Our PTO organizes this every year, for the teachers and all the staff. We participate, but at a minimal level.

IIRC, we usually do $20 for each of the teachers our daughter has each day (Math and ELA); $5 for the special subject teachers (Art, Music, PE, Spanish), the school counselor and school social worker, and the lunch/recess monitors; $10 for each of the office and custodial staff. We do not gift the principal.

It adds up quickly.
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thriftynick
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by thriftynick »

Our kids go to public school, but we gave a $50 gift card to teachers who went above and beyond. $25 or $0 would have been fine too, though.
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alpenglow
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by alpenglow »

I'm a middle school teacher in a HCOL area. Gifts are not expected and have become rare these days. When I started teaching 20 years ago, I'd get 30 or so gifts. Now, out of 120 kids, I'll usually get about 10. Most gifts are $5-10, some are $20, and anything more is unusual.
daleddm
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by daleddm »

As a former public school teacher, anything other than a modest gift certificate for a local store or restaurant would have seemed very awkward to receive. Food items (small baked goods, etc) or something like that far more typical and comfortable ... but then that was some yrs ago.
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alpenglow
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by alpenglow »

epicureme wrote: Wed Nov 23, 2022 12:50 am [Edit] giving too much to teachers ($50, $100, etc.) could also be problematic; remember, teachers have evaluative authority over your children, and should feel free to provide accurate grades (good and bad) without having to feel indebted by an excessive gift. Best wishes.
No gift amount would ever make me consider compromising my integrity, however, I feel a little uncomfortable getting gifts that are $50+.
sureshoe
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by sureshoe »

+1 to "anything more than $25 is too much". I don't think $50+ gifts "buy influence", but it is just a lot for most people (assuming you're not in some expensive private school where flaunting wealth is half the game).

We have done everything from cards and candy to gift cards, ranging from $1-$25. This should be "the thought that counts". One time my work donated time to a "teacher free store" and we were able to give all the teachers a shopping voucher to that - and it was the one time I got hand written feedback from a teacher saying "thanks". So that's a very creative option if it is at your disposal.
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SmileyFace
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by SmileyFace »

We used to do $25 gift cards for each teacher to the local book store. But I supposed printed books are not longer the thing they used to be.
The teachers could choose to buy something for themselves or books for the classroom.
I also don't like the "Group Gift" idea. I don't believe it's fair to ask everyone to contribute a certain amount so glad to hear the organizer is not providing a suggested amount. If it were me - I would say "we are doing our own thing" and not contribute - buy my gift cards. If you want to contribute I would do $20 or $25.
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Watty
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by Watty »

This is so awkward! Even and and expensive private school there are likely a number of kids there who are on a scholarship or grant whose parents could not afford to contribute to a group gift like that.

I don't have a good answer.
Gil Gunderson
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by Gil Gunderson »

You should also probably google if there are any state or district imposed limits on gifts. Illinois bans gifts in excess of $100 cumulatively across the year from any single source (it is not clear to me if a PTA or other parent collective is considered a single source). In addition to making things awkward you might actually put the teachers job in jeopardy if they accept the gift.

We usually stick to Starbucks gift cards. Typically do $5-20 - $20 for the teacher, $5-10 for specials (art, music, gym) and others who frequently interact with our kids (bus driver, school secretary). Kids are in elementary - not sure if this will continue in middle / high school (my guess is the kids will eventually be too embarrassed to give their teachers a card).
Ron Ronnerson
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by Ron Ronnerson »

I’m a public elementary school teacher. $25 gift cards are typical, $50 is generous, and $100 are rare but I do get them at times.

I receive a total of around $1k in gift cards during the year, mostly during the holiday season and for teacher appreciation week. This total amount represents a (very) small percentage of my salary. The contributions of any one parent toward the total are much smaller still. My point is that the sum in question is not significant enough to either make me feel awkward or make me feel indebted to anyone. All it does is make me feel appreciated and happy. It also helps around the holidays when I buy gift cards for the secretaries and custodians at work and give extra money to my housecleaners to show my appreciation to them as well.

A gift is best given with an open heart and not out of some sense of obligation. If you don’t feel like giving a gift, then simply don’t do it. If you choose to, though, you’ll help make the world a little brighter around the holidays.
Gregoryfo
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Re: How much Xmas gift money is appropriate for teachers?

Post by Gregoryfo »

I work for the public schools and we have written into our ethics policy that we cannot accept a gift valued at more than $20. It is also in the yearly pre-service compliance training and an email is sent by central office each year after thanksgiving break. I have no idea how a class-wide collection would impact this? I would suggest you check with the school administrator at your child's school.
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