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    Supplies
    By NJ Teacher

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    I teach in an affluent district. We get $600 for our classroom through the School Specialty catalog. As a grade level, we have a separate budget where workbooks, texts, and other curriculum materials are ordered. We used to be able to put other things on there like crayons, notebooks, writing paper, and pencils, but the principal got wise to what we were trying to do and now that has to come out of our own individual budgets. The only additional money we get for our classrooms is $50 from the PTO. What I find really annoying is that the catalog (School Specialty) charges such inflated prices. The school district receives a discount, but it isn't passed on to the teachers. I find myself stocking up on things like crayons, pencils, notebooks and markers when they are on sale locally because I hate to spend my dollars from the budget on over-inflated items. Luckily, print cartridges don't come out of our budgets--yet. The school secretaries were pretty witchy at the end of the year when everyone was printing digital pictures and running out. You'd think we were asking for gold. We weren't able to ask for school supplies directly until the 4-5 building started doing it. The trouble is, you can't be sure each child will have the supplies, so I find myself covering it anyway.

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