Teacher Urged Kids to Buy Homemade Soap in Wildly Unprofitable Scheme

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Photo: savor_soaps/Flickr

Marlong Scanterbury, a sixth-grade teacher from Canarsie, has been fined $4,000 by the city and reprimanded by the Education Department for encouraging his students to buy his family's homemade soap. The New York Times reports that after the school implemented a "character incentive program" in which students were awarded stickers they could trade in for prizes, Scanterbury offered the kids ten stickers for every bar of soap they bought, and later threw in a "no homework pass." The saddest thing about the incident (aside from the obvious ethical issues): Scanterbury's total lack of business skills. The city's Conflicts of Interest Board found that at least three students bought one bar of soap, and one bought three bars. At $3 to $4 a pop, that means the scheme earned him about $24.