Direct Advertising in Schools
Increasingly schools are selling themselves as sites for advertising, which is appearing on sporting scoreboards, in hallways, on gymnasium floors, on bulletin boards, on school stationary and equipment, on school buses, on school reports and even on rooftops.
Businesses use schools to advertise their products to schools in various ways:Naming Rights BroadcastingComputer/Internet Field Trips/Theatre Book Covers Other Advertising
Reference: Juliet B. Schor, Born to Buy: The Commercialized Child and the New Consumer Culture, New York, Scribner, 2004, p. 121.
US schools receive an estimated $750 million each year from advertising snack and processed foods and drinks.
Reference: GAO, 2004, ‘Commercial Activities in Schools', US Government Accountability Office, August 2004, p. 11.
All school districts display corporate advertising.
Reference: Associated Press, 'Could School Bus Ads Save School Budgets?', Education Week, 19 March 2010.Advertising is allowed on school buses in several states and more are considering it because of budget shortfalls.
Reference: Samuels & Associates, 2006, ‘Food and Beverage Marketing on California High School Campuses Survey: Findings and Recommendations’, Public Health Institute, March.60 percent of posters and signs in Californian schools in 2006 were for junk food and sugary drinks. Just over half the year books and the school newspapers carried advertisements for food and beverages.
Reference: HarrisInteractive, ‘Three-Quarters of Youth Industry Professionals Expect to See Increased Marketing in Schools’, Harris Interactive, 13 April, 2004.A 2004 survey of youth marketers found that three quarters of them expected to see even more advertising in US schools in future.
Reference: Bernie Froese-Germain, ‘National Survey of School Commercialism in Canada’, Perspectives, vol 5, no 3, 2005, p. 7.54 percent of secondary schools have some form of advertising in or on the school, particularly in hallways, cafeterias and on school supplies and team uniforms, and 22 percent have sold space in the school to advertisers. In particular, Coca-Cola and Pepsi advertisements are often found on scoreboards, clocks, banners, schools signs, gym equipment as well as beverage vending machines.
Reference: Kerry Sunderland, ‘Corporate Sponsorship in the Classroom’, Youth Studies Australia, Autumn, 1994, , p. 25; Jacqueline Isles, ‘Corporations in the Classroom’, Consuming Interest, vol 42, no October, 1989, p. 10.
Corporate logos began appearing on school reports and letterheads in Australia in the late 1980s – even McDonald’s logos on school uniforms in one case.
Reference: Christine Milne, ‘Tasmania's Biggest Education Issue: Why We Must Act Now on Corporate Sponsorship’, The Daily Planet, April, 1991, , p. 6.
Woodchip giant TPFH had its logo on the school newsletter of a Tasmanian school.
A European Commission report from the 1990s found that advertising exists in schools throughout Europe, regardless of whether it has been banned as in Belgium, France and Germany or is unregulated as in the UK, the Netherlands, and Ireland. The report claimed that schools benefited from “the penetration of marketing into schools” because it provided resources and even some educational value in that it exposes school children to the world of business and advertising techniques.
- National Institute on Media and the Family, Commercial Advertising in Schools (USA)
- Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, Marketing in Schools (USA)
- Kid Club Marketing - Grade School Advertising
- Kid Club Marketing - Classroom Advertising Strategies
- 'Commercial Advertising in Schools', Commercial Alert