This whole thread bothers me. I'm a teacher and have worked in many different kinds of districts. In one district, we had room parents and the teachers were given many gifts. They were organized by the room parent or individual parents, and we were never involved in requesting or asking for gifts. I just always thought it was sweet of anyone to think of us. I now work in a very impoverished area, and we are lucky to get a piece of candy from a student, and when I do, I feel just as grateful to be thought of. It really doesn't matter what you give a teacher, but the wonderful thing is that you show that they are thought of.
This poor teacher probably has no idea what is going on behind the scenes, and she is being made out to be a greedy person here. Shame on everyone for even thinking that. She gives her all every day for those children, and in no way, made it a personal request, to receive a gift. I think it is sweet of the room parent to have asked or caught on that she desired a ipad, and if she is wanting to help make that happen then good for her. Teachers spend a ton, don't even ask, of money on their students and classroom. I make it a point to buy my own kids' teachers good gifts each year because of all that they do, but in no way, do they expect it. I just want them to know how much we appreciate what they do. Teaching is not a 8-3 job; we take work home in the evenings and weekends, and I've been known to grade on the commute to work in the morning (hubby driving of course). It takes a lot of time out of our own family time. Appreciation doesn't have to be monetary. A sweet note or a student's drawing are all ways to show the love. Just show love, and quit acting like it is horrible that anyone would request you chip in to get a teacher a gift. Nobody is required to chip in. If you don't want to, then don't. AND who cares if she wants it for home or school. That's ridiculous. Would you gift your hairdresser or doctor only something they could use in their place of work?
Merry Christmas, Doc. I got you this speculum. Happy New Year.