Response on how much is spent on school supplies

The Michigan Education Association conducts a poll each week on its Web site. Last week’s poll saw 409 votes around the question: How much money do you spend out-of-pocket each year to buy classroom supplies or items for your students? The results of the poll were:

12.2% – $250 or less
38.9% – Between $250 and $500
48.9% – More than $500

The fact that almost half of the respondents spend over $500 reflects the comments made on the Michigan Education Association’s Facebook page and on this blog earlier this month. Thanks for all your responses.

In case you missed it, the podcast of the last radio show “Who’s Paying for School Supplies?” is now available here. Listen and let us know what you think.


How much did this school employee spend on books?

The August Voices of Michigan Education radio program, which airs Saturday across the Michigan Radio Network (see stations listed to the right) asks the question: “Who is paying for school supplies?” Connie Boylan, a Library Media Parapro from Traverse City Area Public Schools, tells her story in this YouTube video.

Who’s Paying for School Supplies?

school-suppliesOn our August Show, (across the state on August 15) we’re going to back to basics – classroom basics as we near the beginning –  believe it or not – of the 2009-2010 school year. Basics that many people take for granted. We’re talking about simple classroom supplies like, markers, pencils, notebooks, folders, and even coats – that many children and their parents cannot afford. And in these tough economic times, supplies that the schools themselves can no longer afford. So who’s filling the gap? In many cases, it’s the teachers. On average – chipping in $500 each out of their own pocket and for many, much more than that.

We’ll talk with teachers who have been giving more and more of their own resources to help out children (and school systems) who cannot afford these supplies and what needs to be done to rescue teachers already strapped financially themselves. We’ll also hear from a number of parent led and social service agencies which are raising money in the community and online.  All that on the latest edition of the Voices of Michigan Education. We hope you join us.

Some helpful links

The following organizations profiled on the Voices of Michigan Education are working to make a difference in collecting schools supplies for the upcoming school year. You can help by participating by clicking on the links or participating at the stores below.

Operation Kid Equip

Salvation Army of Washtenaw County

School Supply Drop Off Locations

Ann Arbor:

  • Batteries Plus, 3120 Packard
  • Benz Insurance, 3101 E. Eisenhower Parkway
  • Cartridge World, 893 W, Eisenhower
  • Community Auto Wash, 1910 S. Industrial Highway
  • KMart, 215 N. Maple Road
  • Suburban Chevrolet Cadillac of Ann Arbor, 3515 Jackson Road
  • Varsity Ford, Jackson Road


  • KMart, 3100 Washtenaw Ave

National Web Sites Raising School Supply Donations