Bad As A Mother

Are you bad as a mother?

As the school year begins, you may find yourself inundated with letters and notes home about fundraising. I would like to discuss one in particular and it’s the catalog of useless crap that moms are supposed to sell. Let me be perfectly honest…I am not going to sell anything. I mean, the school is asking me to suddenly become one of those annoying people (more here on that) who trap friends in their Facebook groups without permission and then inundate them with posts about products they are selling.

Kid with crayons

So no, I’m not bringing my gift wrap catalog to my moms night out. I’m not going start pitching unsuspecting guests who are at my home for a playdate. I won’t shove a catalog in the faces of my family members with the line, “ya gotta buy something.”

Nope. Not happening.

In fact, you are not going to convince me that a $9 roll of Christmas wrap is a good deal when you and I both know that I could easily purchase a single roll at Costco that would allow me to gift wrap each home on my block. And I think that’s part of the problem. If I was getting some kind of deal with this fundraising, I might consider it. But y’all are trying to sell me a box of chocolates for $18 (hey, Russell Stover is like $6). You are trying to convince me that my $9 roll of gift wrap is for a good cause. Let me simplify it for you. Nobody is buying it. Literally and figuratively.

You see, moms hang out with other moms. We drop our kids off together, drink wine together, and discuss stuff like this together. This probably means that while my school might be selling Christmas wrap (read more about my favorite Christmas traditions here), my friend is selling candy and our other friend is selling tote bags. As if that isn’t enough, we are all in these Facebook groups where people are inviting us to online mascara parties, jewelry parties, leggings parties, homemade candle parties and the like. I work three jobs and I’m just trying to keep my sanity, yo. And let’s be real. They don’t want to buy my $25 super gift wrap fundraising pack any more than I want to buy their $14 box of cookies. So it’s all kind of pointless.

I know what you’re thinking, but I’m not a jerk. In fact, most teachers like me spend their careers working in schools that have zero supplies. I used to spend THOUSANDS of my own dollars each year so that my students could have a good book to read or markers to draw with. I get it. There’s no doubt that the schools need the money. Why I pay obscene taxes to support these schools in my town is an entirely different conversation, but I digress. I want to help you out, local schools! But not like this.

So here’s my suggestion. I mean let’s cut out the damn middleman. Who needs any more crap or pretense? Tell me you need $5, or $10, or even $100 but please don’t make me buy some crap. Kthanksbye.

Signed,
Moms of children in schools everywhere

5 thoughts on “On School Fundraising: Keeping it Real in the ‘Burbs

  1. DFS does exactly what you ask. Every year they do a family fundraiser. They ask each family for $40, but you can give whatever you want. It’s only once at the beginning of the year and that’s it. No selling anything throughout the year 🙂

  2. YES! Two fundraiser packets came home in the backpack today. TWO. In fairness, the gift wrap ranged from $8- $12. Guess the Jersey ‘burbs aren’t as psycho as the Connecticut ones. But still. Sending both packets back sans an order tomorrow. My PTA does offer a “don’t bother me” donation option — I believe it’s in the range of $100, so there you go.

  3. I totally agree. Luckily, our local school hasn’t gotten into that kind of thing too heavily. It does, however, participate in the Scholastic books program. From what I gather, the purchases we make help give the teacher some resources to get items she needs for her classroom. I’m happy to do that, since we love books and would buy many of them anyway. Win-win! We also contribute (on a discretionary basis) about $30 per family for other classroom needs. The class moms put that together and I think it works out well.

  4. I agree 100%! I’m no longer a Mommy of school age children, I’m a grandma of a pre-school child. Many years ago when my own children attended grammar school in Orange County, NY, once a year every child brought home booster tickets to raise money for a different sports program in the local school. First of all, was I going to send my children door to door in the neighborhood when every child in the neighborhood attended the same school or was I going to make my relatives uncomfortable when they visited. I did neither, I gave a donation and that was that. Today when both parents are working or there is a single household this is just another annoyance being added to an already tight schedule. I’m also getting fed up with my co-workers bringing this stuff that I have no use for in for me to buy and get rid of!

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