Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Scholastic & Junk

Ever since I worked my first book fair as a media center volunteer I have been aware of the "junk" on the fair. Those little trinkets like erasers, pencil sharpeners, fuzzy pens (that NEVER work) and the like.  As a media specialist I have been known to "hide" in the back, BOXES of this junk.  Well now teachers are trying to organize a fight with Scholastic.  In an article in Monday's USA Today, the group Campaign for a Commercial free Childhood is starting a petition for Scholastic to get rid of the junk and get back to the books.

As a former marketing person, I do know that Scholastic makes their money on this junk - and in turn WE make more money on our book fair from the purchase of said junk - BUT, as the group is asking, is it right?

Like I said above, I have long hidden boxes of junk during the fair, I make decisions on what I feel comfortable putting out and what I think needs to be left in the boxes, just like any "store owner" would.  I also have made a deal with my Scholastic Rep (The FANTASTIC Tammi Brown) that on my fall fair I get it all, but on my spring fair I only get books and also a handful of bookmarks and pencils (we cannot give change for a check so sometimes if parents have written the check out for a specific amount we have to add a few of these to make the purchase total the check amount.)

In my area there is not much choice in the book fair market, I have used other companies before, but for what I want/need, Scholastic meets my needs. SO no, I won't be canceling my fair in protest, I will keep on doing what I have done for six years and maybe the result of this petition will be, I will have less boxes of junk to hide next book fair!

1 comment:

Sue said...

We do scholastic fairs too. The "crap" that they send does annoy me to no end because it is a BOOK fair. I do realize that it sells and does make money for the school. Hopefully with this protest, scholastic will send less of the crap and more of their great books!