I know teachers spend out of pocket for supplies… and I think that’s wrong. We turn our heads because we feel we did our part and the rest is up to them. We couldn’t be further from the truth but we keep letting it happen… Why?
But worse than that is the way schools force us to buy supplies that your classroom doesn’t need or ever use. Only to be topped by that notice or request for more supplies 3 months later.
Honestly – Where does it go?
It bugged me when we were in the public school system and it bugs me every year I see the lists go out. You think you are buying supplies for your kid, but in reality you are filling the school’s inventory. That’s right. At some schools the supplies you send in will not even be used in the classroom your child is in.
You don’t know this, so you put your child’s name on every folder, scissors, and crayon set… only to have it collected and redistributed. Heaven forbids if your child happens to see his or her name being given to someone else. At the end of the year left over supplies are given out and you wonder why they didn’t keep the supplies. Let it roll over and save on next year costs?
Instead of this broken and undesirable system… why are we not making it better for both the parents and the teachers?
Why not have the teachers post what they need for their classroom? 10 wide ruled paper, 10 marker sets, 20 pencils… etc. And allow parents to contribute to the classroom as they are able to?
With the technology available today, why not an inventory on a website so parents know when the teacher is running low or what the upcoming project needs? Or heck… why not a donation to the teacher so he/she can go get the things they need?
Such as Donors Choose where teachers can post what they need and you can help fund it.
Or Adopt a Classroom and make an impact directly to a classroom of your choice.
Take a look and see how Classroom Central is going a step farther and serving their community needs a little differently.
There is no reason why we should pay teachers so little and then make them pay on average $1000 more out of their pockets. There is no reason why parents should struggle to get everything exactly on their school supply list turned in, only to be told they ran out and need more. (To be fair kids do you use the stuff up but seeing how and when? For example we were requested to send in lined paper but all we saw was computer/ printer generated worksheets. So why not a request for computer paper?) Making the process a little more transparent might possibly alleviate the frustration. Don’t you think?
I know that school supplies are not only needed at the start of the new school year but as an on-needed basis. I don’t like racing other parents to find the only acceptable composition book is now on backorder. Or travel to six different stores to find everything you need. I would rather skip all that and buy a $20 or $50 gi
If nothing else, make the process better than it was 10 years ago. Have the the supplies delivered and bundled for each student/ classroom AT the school. Why the run around? Is it amusing to watch parents exhaust themselves? And school uniforms… um you do realize kids continue to grow and need replacements throughout the year? Try finding a school uniform in February. Good Luck.
Any hoo. I left the rat race years ago. Every time I think I want a break from homeschooling… maybe this is the year they can go back to public school… Something like the supply list posted in the stores or the frenzy over a tax-free weekend is a small reminder that the needs of the community… in this case the teachers and the students… are not being served well.
I don’t know if I could trade picking up a box of pencils or new pack of paper at my leisure for the running around we use to do. OR waiting for the one weekend in the year where I can save a little… I can actually find those savings all year around.
And because I am aware of the projects or type of activity we do in our classroom, last minute requests don’t leap out from behind me and surprise me… Mostly because I have already preapproved them! 😉
Where ever you are schooling this year, I do wish you the best year. If you want to make a difference in Public Schools or Homeschools, drop off a gift card from an office/ teacher supply/book store.
I promise your teacher could use the extra love!