Scholastic Pushing Junk on Kids in Classrooms

11 02 2009

Marketing in schools is a privilege and not a right,” Ms. Linn said in an interview.
“Scholastic is abusing that privilege.”

I don’t see why marketing in schools should be allowed at all. And doesn’t anyone read Alfie Kohn anymore, hmmm, or maybe teachers these days buy “Punished by Rewards” just to get some little plastic tiara packaged with it? 😦

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11 responses

11 02 2009
Meg

My homeschool group does the group scholastic book orders and they have been selling more than books for ages.

OTH, it’s a company that needs to stay connected with their market and the market isn’t always interested in books.

11 02 2009
JJ

So that’s what the company “needs” — but what do our kids “need” when they’re learning to love books and reading, wherever they are? Isn’t that the right question?

It’s objectionable to me for children to be treated as a market, just as much as it is to treat them as labor or exploit them for sexual gratification, anything adults may “need” to use them for. *Especially* while calling it education.

11 02 2009
deldobuss

What about the fact that since I was in Kindergarten, half of the books Scholastic sells at their book fairs and through the catalog program are simplified movie scripts of the popular movies of the day?

Scholastic has always been about money and marketing, at least since I can remember. They have put out some good books, but they are few and far between. Why don’t they market classic books? Why don’t they encourage reading quality material, rather than just an echo of our materialistic and sensational society?

11 02 2009
JJ

To me selling out education to marketers is the same outrage at any age:
Like this.

I blogged it as College Kids Sold Out By Their Own Schools.

Favorite Daughter blogged it from the student’s POV:
Thos Who Would Like to Preapprove Us All

11 02 2009
JJ

Meg, I do think homeschool groups deciding to participate is justifiable as private consumer choice though. I may not like it as a mom or an educator, but I support parent choice to do all sorts of things I dislike or disapprove of.

And if y’all do the Pizza Hut summer reading prizes or just go to McDonald’s for trinkets in a box and call it lunch, same thing. Start and end with prayer, with or without bible story books and action figures from a catalog, same thing. 🙂

But public education selling out field trips and the curriculum itself to those same corporate and/or religious interests? Not with my approval.

11 02 2009
JJ

It’s not just marketing that distorts education in institutional school, of course. John Taylor Gatto nails the hidden curriculum of responding to the bell, tests and grades, etc, so there’s all that going on, plus I’d include military recruiting and organized sports as cultural stories writing identity on schoolkids and punishing them with rewards.

20 07 2009
Is “UnCultured” Desirable or Even Possible, for Our Girls? « Cocking A Snook!

[…] she danced almost daily through her tween-teen years with a small class of girls self-selected from public and private Christian school cultures. She has a lot to say about Girl Culture for Thinking Parents to consider, especially if it still […]

11 01 2010
I Did the Math — This Sums Up America’s Mess « Cocking A Snook!

[…] of failure but even more than Dietrich Dorner, what about Alfie Kohn? It’s quite literally “punished by rewards” . . . Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)SEED Mag’s Business Math […]

13 04 2010
Jeff Parker

I have an issue with Scholastic. My 4th grade daughter gets Scholastic News every week. It seems there is always an article about Obama, or the historic health care bill that just passed or about global warming. I don’t need them to be pushing their political views on my child. Educate; don’t indoctrinate.

13 04 2010
JJ

Gasp! News stories about the president of our nation, and historic legislation passing?! In SCHOOLS?

14 04 2010
Nance Confer

Maybe the poster was used to not having any scientific or historic news covered under the former president. Did Scholastic fail to mention all the great stuff the Bush admin was involved in? Maybe they couldn’t. Their newsletter is read by children, after all.

Nance

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