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This just seems like a conflict of interest to me......

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The whole school (300 students) goes on a field trip to an apple orchard.

$17.00 a kid to take a 2 mile bus ride, a small paper cup of Apple Cider, one doughnut, one hotdog and a bottle of water.

The kicker is one of the teachers at this school OWNS the orchard.

There are two other apple orchards within the same mileage from the school.

What do you think about this?

by on Oct. 3, 2012 at 5:40 PM
Replies (61-70):
by on Oct. 4, 2012 at 11:53 AM

Location is going to make a big difference in prices but locally as the PTO Treasruer I pay for the field trips our kids take and we allows $20 per kid a year and that usually equates to 2 field trips including buses.  Typically they go to a pumpkin farm this time of year and the zoo or other some sort of place in the spring.

As for the OP if the teacher who owns it is not the one who made the decision where to go and those who did make the decision looked at all the other options and chose that one based on price/quality etc then I do not see a conflict of interest, but that is why we make it a point to NOT go to things that are owned by school staff or PTO members.  We also try to not go to things that are owned by any parent in the school at all, but sometimes that is difficult.  We make our decisions based on price/quality etc, but to avoid the possiblity of someone thinking conflict of interest we avoid it all together.

by on Oct. 4, 2012 at 11:55 AM
That sounds really pricey to me, but our schools cover the cost of field trips, or mostly. I think the most I've spent on a field trip is $10...I might have paid a little more when my oldest went to a museum in hartford, which is a good hour drive from here...
by on Oct. 4, 2012 at 12:03 PM
1 mom liked this

Quoting dilateyourmind:

Quoting iansusie:

Quoting banana-bear:

I can't believe people want something for nothing. Y'all are outrageous. It's not a bad deal and I don't see it as a conflict of interest.

It is not wanting something for nothing but $17 for a field trip like she described is way too much. My kid is going to a pumpkin patch an hour away and the fee is $9 and that includes a pumpkin. They can pack a lunch or get a baggeds one from the cafeteria (at the parents expense). Parents/chaperones pay $9 too plus $4.50 for cafeteria lunch or they can bag one for themselves.

$17 for a 2 mile round trip and a small cup of apple cider, a hot dog a doughnut and water is just outrageous

Buying hotdogs and buns in bulk makes them cheaper, so lets say a hot dog would be no more than $2

Water bottles would be at the most 1.00 per child

Doughnut 50 cents

cup of apple cider $2.00 (and I am being generous) 

What about money to pay the employees at th eorchard to do all that for 300 kids? Not being a msart ass for once. Just asking.

If the orchard does this on daily basis, it should not cost more than what I listed. And if it is that big of a deal have the kids pack their lunch and just give them an apple cider (which my guess is something they sell at the orchard for anyone who visits, so if they charge $2 a cup, the employee's payment comes from that). At $2 for a hot dog there is a profit. Buy water by the case and they come up to about 16 cents a bottle. Doughnuts cannot be costing more than 50 cents and the teachers. chaperones could distribute those.  Now she did not mention that they did any hayrides, mazes, etc. So yes $17 is too much for this particular fieldtrip. 

They did not pick apples. I found a listing for an orchard. $24 enters 5 people and gives them 20lbs of apples. So for $17, they should have at least brought home a lb of apples in addition to what the OP mentioned

by on Oct. 4, 2012 at 12:04 PM

Where I live, you don't pay for field trips. They're free. So I would think this is just a way to make money for the teacher.

by Bronze Member on Oct. 4, 2012 at 12:09 PM
1 mom liked this

$17 seems like a lot for the items you listed.

The fact that one of the teachers owns the orchard doesn't seem like an issue to me, unless the other orchards are WAY cheaper and they are choosing this one ONLY BECAUSE it is owned by the teacher.

by on Oct. 4, 2012 at 12:10 PM

First of all, what region of the country are you in? If you are in Seattle money will not go as far as say, Northern Michigan (where I'm from). Do the other orchards have field trips and what do they charge? It could be a conflict of interest so to speak but at the same time it could be a beneficial one because the school may be offered a discount saving the families more money.  

To me, being in Boulder, CO it seems expensive because the apple orchard trip (to an organic orchard are $8/ student and teachers/ chaperones are free) and the kids only get a cup of cider and a donut.

We only have ONE orchard within two hours of us and it is a very young orchard which does not produce enough because they constantly turn people away and reservations need to be made by February in order to get a spot which is on a first come, first serve basis. 

by Bronze Member on Oct. 4, 2012 at 12:11 PM

My daughter is being bussed to another town for a field trip and the trip costs us $3.  It only gets expensive if the school can't use school buses and has to get charter buses and I don't think that would happen in this instance since the orchard is so close.

Quoting maxswolfsuit:


If they are giving the same or better deal than the other orchards I don't see it as a an issue.

The money probably mainly covers the bus. It's outrageously expensive to bus students. It makes field trips really tricky.  

by on Oct. 4, 2012 at 12:16 PM
This except ours are usually around $7, but the kids never get food on the trips either.

Quoting Barabell:

Based on what we pay for field trips, I think it's expensive. Usually, my only fee is busing, and that is $5 per field trip. The field trips never include food. Either the kids pack lunch or they can buy a packed lunch from the cafeteria for the same daily cafeteria rate (under $2).

So I think it's expensive. 

If the field trip is still cheaper than the other orchids, then maybe there isn't a conflict of interest. I just don't know enough about the rates of your area.

Posted on CafeMom Mobile
by on Oct. 4, 2012 at 12:18 PM

Free labor? 

by on Oct. 4, 2012 at 12:19 PM

It could be a conflict of interest if the school is allowing her business to profit by going to a more expensive orchard. There are other orchards close by in her case which we don't know the cost, quality or if they even offer field trips. Most of the places in our area list the cost for field trips on their sites, OP should look into that.

In our area which has a higher cost of living, field trips rarely go above $10/ student and that is admission to the zoo, aquarium, museums, pumpkin patch, apple orchard and more. 

Quoting dcdmattison03:

 Not seeing the issue or the conflict of interest. The price sounds right to me. Field trips are not cheap with the busses, the drivers, the gas, admission (if there is one) etc.

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