Ad Age looks at the struggle to keep advertising out of schools.
Earlier this year, a teacher at a New Jersey private school handed out more than homework to the middle-school students: brochures and sample packets of Clearasil.
The company defends it as an educational effort. “The material is all educational in terms of proper skin care,” a spokesman said. “It’s obviously sponsored by Clearasil, but the actual purpose is to be educational.”
Education about personal hygiene is fine in any school, but branded content on an acne treatment isn’t, said Gary Ruskin, director of the advocacy group Commercial Alert. “It’s totally inappropriate to run a sampling or advertising program in school for an over-the-counter medication targeting impressionable children,” he said.