Opinion / Forum Trends

Should teachers accept gifts from students?

( Updated: 2015-09-07 08:08

TedM (UK)

In my school in England teachers may receive a few small gifts (usually chocolates) at the very end of a school year, but usually these are given to the most popular female teachers. In no way are they intended as a bribe but an expression of liking, and as a goodbye gift. In fact some teachers would spend their money on large amounts of sweets for their students at Christmas, Easter or at the end of the school year. This practice forced many teachers to do the same as their students then expected the same treatment. (Almost opposite to the Chinese practice!)

In China, I was delighted to receive little gifts; sweets and flowers, at this time last year, and gifts and thanks from the school. I must agree that some parents in China feel they can get advantages for their child by giving teachers expensive gifts. One father sent a van full of boxes of expensive cakes as gifts for all the teachers in one grade. Such gifts do nothing to induce teachers to give more attention to his child, yet are clearly seen as some sort of bribe. The most precious gifts are little things that students have bought or made themselves as genuine offers of thanks and friendship.

Should teachers accept gifts from students?

Kingdergarten students send handmade gifts to their English teacher Laura from UK on Sept 9, 2013.[Photo/IC]

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