Should teachers accept end of term gifts from pupils?

The tradition in some schools to give a gift to the class teacher and teaching assistant at the end of term to thank them has been around for a while but some schools try to discourage this practice or ban it completely.

There are a variety of reasons that some schools are uncomfortable with this gift-giving with one reason being that it could be construed as a bribe. The thought that any teacher would treat a pupil in their class differently because of a gift is however ludicrous. Another reason that people who are against this idea give is that the children who do not give a gift to the teacher feel guilty that they do not have a gift to give. This is a justifiable point, but a small homemade bookmark costs nothing to make and can be equally as appreciated by the teacher.

Teachers work hard throughout the year and try to ensure that every child in their care reaches their potential. A small, inexpensive gift shows the teacher that they are appreciated as does a thank you card written by the pupil. It is not about the cost of the gift, it is the sentiment behind it that counts.