(I took down the "Google Image" as my perception was misunderstood. I apologize. It wasn't our son)
Recently one of our sons has been stealing. Stealing from school and from his friends. Just last Friday he stole from his one and only best friend. A friend that lives down the street who he has play dates with. Unfortunately they've been cancelled. Lately at our school the PAC (Parent Advisory Council) is on a mission to raise funds. I completely understand that raising money for our children is a great idea although sometimes it becomes "too much" A few years ago I was the Secretary for our schools PAC, now I don't even acknowledge there is one. On behalf of myself this sounds quite ignorant but it's too much "drama" for me. (Sorry) So lately there has been numerous bake sales held during school hours. Now here's where we have issues with this - our children are limited sugar. I also make enormous healthy lunches with my own baked goods accordingly for each of our children. So I told our children, "No money for the bake sale, you have great lunches with your own baked goods inside" The temptation is too high for our children. So our one son decides he's entitled to buy baked items with this money he found. Explaining theft to him was like explaining what makes an airplane fly. It was very confusing for him. He explained the money was sitting right there and he wanted to buy some goodies. After all everyone else was buying goodies, why not him? This is another reason I don't agree selling items at school should be during the school hours, all the children and including their parents feel they have too to make sure it's fair for their child. This puts us parents in a battle that shouldn't exist. When my husband was speaking to our sons teacher, she also stated that she couldn't even teach that afternoon because of all the wired children stemming from this bake sale. I keep explaining that it's not about the money, it's about listening to our reasoning's (as parents) on why you're not allowed purchasing items at school. So with all this fundraising happening, we've seen an escalation (an opening) to steal because if everyone else can, why can't I? Another one of our sons "borrowed" money to buy a book after I told him "No books" These book sales seem to be every month! I keep explaining that we're not buying every time a pamphlet is handed out to buy! Usually we'll buy everyone a book through school at the end of their school year. I try to develop traditions, routines that they will understand and follow but again the temptation is too high. Their entitlement remains because the school is allowing it. Anything I try to prevent at home gets caught floating in the wind somewhere. It can be very frustrating. Ultimately we (I) can't control on how our Society works because I would change the push to spend on our children, leave it until after hours. I'm also not naive, the temptation is everywhere but we could leave it out of our schools. (My opinion of course) We don't take any theft lightly. So our son started with his lines after school. Then followed by an apology letter attached with double the amount of money taken that he's working off. I don't believe his consequences are harsh by no means. Meaning our children really need to grasp the concept that taking anything that isn't theirs is wrong. Even if it's found, it's not theirs. There is a owner for everything until proven otherwise. With some of our children with FAS (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome) Their thoughts are simply, "I found it" without recognizing they're stealing it. So taking 50 cents can increase to taking an idling car (because it's simply running) to heading into someones home because the door was left open. As their Mother I'm completely protecting our children's future with the necessary consequences provided and it's repetitious! The sad conclusion is a friend was upset and now possibly not a friend anymore. As I explained to our son "taking something" creates more then being reprimanded, it's the trust that's being lost and the feelings of having once a good friend to no friend at all. That's the most upsetting consequence especially when friends are limited and hard to come by!