And the reason for the whining? A horrific case of The Wants.
I don't know about every school district, but in mine the end of the year seems to be less about learning and more about buying shit. There's the book orders and the fundraisers. (Which to the children is only about "winning" cheap, plastic, crap that will break the moment it comes home and cost more than 1000 times its value.) Then there's the myriad of events, field trips and tournaments, all of which cost to participate.
What bothers me most about all of this is that I can't just say no once and be done with it. Oh, no! "They" will remind the children incessantly about said oh-so-important-way-to-get-even-more-of-my-money, by talking it up in school, sending home "reminders"
But there are bigger problems than me being labeled the mean mom. It sucks that my district has to do these things to make ends meet. (Thanks Brownback.) Even more than that, it creates this want in my children that I am having a hard time combating. I don't want ungrateful, little, consumers that are never satisfied and thereby never happy. I want children that are grateful for what they have, are generous of spirit and who give more than they take. Encouraging this rampant consumerism only reaps another generation of entitled brats, and don't we have enough of those already?
I know my school isn't to blame for the state of the current generation, but wouldn't it be nice if I didn't have to say no to another pointless, money-grab this week?