I'm a list buyer for the most part,
I do like it when it says specific brands or at least a little more specific, like with number of crayons... for my 2nd grader this year on his list... crayons... okay so how many? should I buy the tiny pack? probably not, he will use more than that... bump up to the 24 pack? yeah that's a good number, but I know he has had his eyes on the 48 pack, even if it is shared with the class oh and they have a 64 pack too.... look at all those colors.... so what did I do? bought the 48 pack for school and bought him the super monster 120!!!! pack for his birthday to use here at the house. (I'll admit I had a bad experience with shared crayons in the 3rd grade that truly was a devastating incident in my life... up to that point school supplies were your own, there were some things that the whole class might share, but scissors, pencils, crayons, your ruler, your crayons, paste... they were all kept in your little cardboard box and you were responsible for keeping up with your own items.... so 1st day or whatever of 3rd grade the teacher took my precious box of crayons, dumped them all out, broke them in half and proceeded to put them all in a couple of big boxes.... my heart was broken... I cried. Her reasoning was that they would get broken at some point and the tips would all wear down and that it was easier to share this way... well maybe other kid's crayons got unpointy and broken and the paper ripped off them... mine never did
It still bothers me today when our youngest sits around and unwraps the paper from all his crayons when he 1st gets a new box "because I like to see all the different colors"
In K I asked the teacher "why" she said Kleenex tissues on her list but did not specify brand specific on anything else, her response was that Kleenex were the single pop up type instead of having to reach into the box like some of the other brands and it was easier to just ask for Kleenex rather than explaining that the other kinds get used quicker because more than one would be taken or that they would get messy from hands being on more that just the top one... so after that I bought the single pop up kind, but the generic ones, she was happy because she got more tissues that way, so it doesn't hurt to ask.
School just started for my guys this year, 2 of the schools in our district are year round, I was a little disappointed that I'm not able to catch the good sales at the stores like there will be in a few more weeks when all the other schools start.
We had a paper come home from the school saying something about legislation has changed and that the student is not required to buy any supplies or to pay any fees except those which the school board have agreed upon and that if buying those supplies or paying those fees would be a hardship on the family to contact the school and they would be waived. I thought that was pretty cool! Although it did say something in there about more supplies you bought for the school the more funds they had for other stuff....