The Daily Gazette
The Locally Owned Voice of the Capital Region

Nickel-and-diming parents for school supplies

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Letters such as the one in Tuesday’s paper grousing about the high cost of school supplies are typical at this time of year. Parents presented with complex shopping lists in the weeks before or after school opens can get overwhelmed — not just by the cost, but by the task itself. They’re right that there’s got to be a better way, but school districts don’t want to hear about it because it means finding the ...

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September 14, 2013
7:03 a.m.

[ Flag Post ]

The Gazette wrote, "Kids shouldn’t have to buy their own pencils or notebooks or glue sticks, or anything else they need to thrive in class." LOL. What about teaching some responsibility? No pencils? No notebook? Really? I am not sure what message we are sending to the world when we have shed all responsibility from the parents and teachers in this country. I may be wrong but I thought Schenectady schools stopped requiring homework of students at certain grade levels and is now providing everyone with a free breakfast and lunch. The intent may have been in the right place but the reality is the position being taken by many is NOTHING is required of the parents or children. It seems like it is the responsibility of the schools and teachers ONLY. I think that is the wrong message.

September 14, 2013
8:47 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

My problem isn't supplies per se, but the SPECIFICATIONS for many of the supplies.
Instead of recommending 4 notebooks, often the specs are 1 red, 1 green, 1 blue and 1 yellow notebook. Instead of adhesive, a specific brand and size. "One Crayola 24 color pencils" .... etc. "Felt-tip pens of the following colors:" ..
Howzabout I send the kid to school with 1 large 3 ring binder, a set of dividers, and SOME colored pens and pencils of VARIOUS colors. If the school wants specifics, let them furnish them.

September 15, 2013
9:31 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

One option that we have tried to get our district to embrace would be the district purchasing in bulk. Parents in our district who have talked about this are willing to pay for the supplies. We believe if the district purchased 500 boxes of crayons, 1,000 one inch binders, and 5,000 pencils they would get them at a lower price point than individual families can purchase them at. Of course we have told this can't be done.

September 15, 2013
10:02 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

@mrusso67 - 'Of course we have [been] told this can't be done.'
This sounds like the same school district that transported my daughter for 2 years on a bus that would, at most, pick up 4 other kids on her route. A bus. Our questions to why they couldn't come up with an SUV or minivan that would be far more cost effective were met with variations of what you said above.

We need to stop beating up on the people directly responsible for our children a good part five days a week, the teachers, and start flushing out those hiding in their offices behind their pc monitors.