California district urges words of praise for teachers instead of gifts

June 6, 2007
Irvine, Calif., policy change comes after family says it had to give teachers gifts to get the care required for autistic son.

Prompted by allegations that parents were forced to shower teachers with gifts so their autistic son would get the care he needed, Irvine (Calif.) schools trustees have adopted a policy that encourages students and families to write personal notes and letters of appreciation to district employees instead of giving them presents. The policy does not prohibit Irvine Unified School District teachers and staff from taking gifts, but says they are not required and that district employees should use "sound professional judgment" when deciding whether to accept a gift.

Click here to read The Los Angeles Times article.

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