Money Moral Dilemma: Should I ask for my daughter's school-leavers' celebrations to be cheaper?

edited 26 April at 5:41PM in MoneySaving mums
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  • FTB_on_FIREFTB_on_FIRE Forumite
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    I don't think the t-shirts are needed - we wore our school t-shirts on the last day and signed each others with a marker pen. It's free, as you already have the shirt, and it's more memorable and sentimental that way. I still have mine. Could you suggest that instead?
  • MagsyMagsy Forumite
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    Yes definitely. There will be loads of parents who will agree with you. They won't have a better time because of t-shirts and so on and I bet several people feel the same.You don't have to make it personal just say 'worried that we are making it inaccessible for a lot of children especially this year with loads of people having been furloughed bills gone up etc. Why don't we cut back on a few things / do some fund raising/ get a sponsor or whatever' it si too much and we are all going mad as a society with princess parties and so on that kids don't really have a better time at.
  • PaulTeePaulTee Forumite
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    The committee probably consists of parents who have good well paid jobs so £75 is what they spend on a meal out. If that is the case then the committee needs a broad spectrum of parents, especially those on lower incomes, so that a more realistically priced events are put on.

    My parents were on very low incomes and at my school there was a 12/6p voluntary contribution to the 'G' fund each term. My parents could not afford this - especially as the school uniform had to comer from one supplier at a huge mark up - and I was the only boy who did not pay and the teachers certainly liked to belittle me.

    Talk to other parents in the same position and present a united front.
  • slowcyclistslowcyclist Forumite
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    Thankfully my children are now both past that age, but I remember that it tended to be the more affluent mums that had the time, presumably by virtue of not having to work, to organise these activities.  While I was grateful that they took the trouble to organise these activities, I couldn't help but feel that the activities were more aligned with their budgets than some other parents and failed to recognise that the costs were either unaffordable or difficult for many families.

    I now find that the schools themselves aren't any better. My son recently (earlier this month) had a field trip for one of his GCSEs with a total cost of around £300 for two nights away.  The trip was announced in mid-November with £100 payment required by the end of the month and the full balance by the end of January.  We were fortunate that we could manage it, but finding £300 at little notice so close to Christmas was difficult. 

    I suggested to the school that as they typically run similar trips each year they could easily publish a schedule a year or more in advance showing what trips they usually run, roughly when the trips take place and give an indication of the expected or historic costs to at least give parents a chance to budget over a longer period.  From their lack of interest I can only assume that it would divert valuable resource away from whinging about pupils' sock colours or hem lengths.
  • phoenixhajphoenixhaj Forumite
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    meant to add to the above post, that whoever suggested something costing £75 needs to think about children whose parent/parents cannot afford this amount. Life can be tough for children when their family has less money than their friends family It is hard not being able to do what your friends do or have what they have and this just makes it worse. What is wrong with an end of year party at the school, much more inclusive.
  • All_EarsAll_Ears Forumite
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    Trip? Fine! T-shirt? As your child will have grown out of in a couple of years, what's the point? Yearbook? Also questionable as most people tend to form longer lasting relationships with those they meet during one's secondary education and/or college/Uni. and then workplace. Memories are cheap because they are the ones in ones brain, not in a t-shirt which may be worn once and never again or a Yearbook. Oh and if you think that £75 is expensive, just wait until the Valedictory do (School Prom) of your secondary school, where it won't be t-shirts that will be worn nor arrival in just a coach or minibus, so start saving now as you've only got 5 years in which to cough up for the ball gown, tuxedo and limo!
  • LAMarsalaLAMarsala Forumite
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    When my eldest was leaving primary school, they did things totalling just over £100, but there was options to pay in installments so it made it easier - maybe speak to the school and ask for a payment plan?  
  • MagsyMagsy Forumite
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    Oh and to add to above what about a digital year book that is free to produce? Probably the best people to do this are the kids themselves! A few of them could be responsible for setting this up with a helper.  
  • L'il_sisL'il_sis Forumite
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    Mad idea to spend that much. Whatever happened to a disco in the school hall with a couple of quid for crisps and a drink?
    The committee need a wake up call! 
  • grandmafromnorthgrandmafromnorth Forumite
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    Absolutely ridiculous! Why do we need these extravagant gestures? Sign each other’s shirts and have a party. We hear all the time of families struggling with the cost of living and at the same time they are holding these over the top exhibitions. 
    Be brave and have the courage to speak out. Say you will struggle to fund the events, and I expect others will follow. 
    If someone doesn’t speak out the whole fiasco will keep escalating. 
    The staff of the school should also be called upon to stop these ridiculous happenings.
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