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#1 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 07:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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OK, in the interest of full disclosure we homeschool. My oldest, who is entering sixth grade, did go to public school from first through third grade, but we've been homeschooling ever since. Additionally, while I went to public school for my last two years of high school, before that I was in a private Catholic school. I do have a degree in music education and did masters work in education as well, and took all the educational history classes, but my public school experience is somewhat limited.

A friend of mine was telling me about "textbook rental fees" her public school charges. They seemed outrageously high to me. Other friends then mentioned that they had to pay for things like using the school bus as well.

Now, I know that public school isn't "free" per se. I know when I was there, we had to buy school supplies, gym uniforms, rent instruments, pay entree fees to choral festivals, pay for AP exams, stuff like that. When my oldest was in school, we actually weren't allowed to buy school supplies for him-- everything was provided by the school district. Even when I was in Catholic school, I went to public school once a week for a pull out program, and they were legally required to let me because it was a program our Catholic school didn't have.

So, I guess now I'm curious-- what do you have to pay for to attend public school? And what if you can't pay it? And if anyone can clarify to me how public schools can charge when I thought all children in America were guaranteed a free education (although maybe I am misremembering that and it's not a guaranteed right?) I would really appreciate that as well.

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#2 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 08:01 PM
 
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Well, we paid for nothing K-5th. The school took care of supplies and such. Instruments are rent free through 8th grade for those who don't own or rent their own.

6th grade was our most expensive year and that was because we needed to get DD a P.E. uniform and lock for her P.E. locker (which she used all 3 years.) She also had a short list of supplies. It was still under 40 bucks. There were some extra pay options in middle school. 6th grade camp was 300 dollars. The show choir went to a big competition involving travel and that was another 300. Both those events were optional and the school offered fundraising opportunities for all and financial aid if you needed it.

We're heading into high school with our eldest. We'll need to buy a new P.E. uniform. She will have a supply list of her own consumable items like folders, pencils, paper, ect. There may be fees for AP exams this year but the district has paid them in the past. Testing is now optional and we won't have to pay the fees until test time.

Textbook fees are illegal in our state as are most other fees (perhaps why we get pounded for having high education costs in our state.) School busses have been charging for a long time. I know you had to buy tokens when I was in high school and that was 20 years ago! I always drive my kids because they don't go to our "home" schools. Most kids either walk of are driven in our area. I understand the fee. Busses are so expensive to fuel and keep running. The fee isn't even the total cost of the bussing. The district still pays a good chunk of it. Is it fair? No. Is it avoidable? Not really.

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#3 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 08:05 PM
 
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We aren't required to pay for anything except school supplies and field trips.

HOWEVER. The school sends a letter at the beginning of each year. It's called the Grateful Request (which, as an editor, makes me crazy). Basically, they ask parents for $100 per student and detail what this money will go toward. It's all programs that the district has cut or doesn't want to fund and are important to most of us (art, science lab supplies, music). I have no idea how many parents respond to this letter. We do.
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#4 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 08:14 PM
 
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Here public school dosnt cost anything other than breakfast and lunch and special things like year books or pictures. The books are paid for by the state busing is provided free of charge as well since the vast majority of people couldnt afford to pay for it and the vast majority of kids would have absolutely no way to school without the bus.

Class trips are paid for through the state only on occasion do we have to pay a $1 or 2 literally it is rarely more than that. This holds true for headstart all the way through 12th.

I am always shocked to hear about public schools charging book rental fees and stuff like that. Parents provide pencils and paper and stuff of that nature but that is it.

Tennessee here.

 
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#5 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 09:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the input so far! I wanted to add, if you feel comfortable saying what state you're in, could you? I'm in PA. I guess I always assumed it was a federal mandate for free public schools (and again, I wish I could remember from Foundations in Education where that mandate came from), and hadn't thought it was at the discretion of individual states.

I wanted to add, we live a small-to-medium sized city. One of the reasons we were told that sending in individual supplies for students was discourages is because not all the kids could afford them and so it was easier for the district to buy in bulk and distribute to the elementary kids.

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#6 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 09:31 PM
 
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DS is entering 1st grade in a public school in Lexington, Kentucky. He is required to bring

-4 glue sticks
-2 packs yellow #2 pencils
-2 boxes 24 count Crayola crayons
-1 Mead Composition book
-2 large boxes tissues
-1 backpack
-1 bottle pump hand sanitizer
-1 box washable Crayola markers
-1 clipboard
-1 2-pocket folder

In addition they have a wish list of

-1 wooden ruler
-1 container wet-ones
-1 large pink eraser
-1 box band-aids
-1 roll paper towel

My little sister is entering 3rd grade at a public school in Michigan (in a tiny town) and they don't have to bring anything except a backpack.

Around here they are having 5 locations in neighborhoods around the city this saturday where you can go and get free school supplies if you can't afford them. I don't know how they verify it or if it's on an honor system (I know you have to bring the child with you to get the supplies).

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#7 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 09:33 PM
 
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And I have to say I'm one of *those* parents who doesn't pay too much attention to the lists. I get everything on them, but not necessarily the brand. I'm not paying $2.50 for a Mead composition book when I can get the same darn thing in an off brand for $.25! FFIL told me to just get a sharpie and write MEAD on it

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#8 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 09:50 PM
 
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The school lists we never bought from them at least not most of the stuff on it only what we felt dd truly needed so pencils, crayons and paper and the brands that where cheapest. Seriously why would I spend a $1 for crayola crayons when I can get generic ones for .10 at the dollar store.

This year the parents have vetoed the lists so they are no longer allowed to send them out.

 
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#9 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 10:09 PM
 
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DS will be in K this year and I know we will have a supply list but we don't yet. I saw last years, its not too much, just basic like what pp Steph posted. I have no problem buying his supplies and supplies for the classroom. We live in a very, very good district, people are on lists from out of district to send their children here as tuition students so I feel lucky that we are in this district. Public schools are taking huge, huge hits financially so for me its being in this district or private school, I would prefer to support this district and have ds also be a part of the wonderful community that we have here as well. I don't have a problem getting exactly whats on the list, if the teacher specified a brand of something I bet there is a reason why, she has years of experience and probably knows a thing or two about what works and what doesn't.
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#10 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 10:13 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MCatLvrMom2A&X View Post
The school lists we never bought from them at least not most of the stuff on it only what we felt dd truly needed so pencils, crayons and paper.

This year the parents have vetoed the lists so they are no longer allowed to send them out.

I don't get "vetoing" the lists. If parents don't supply this stuff for the kids then its on the teachers, there is NO MONEY in the public school budgets, its just not there. Yes we pay taxes that ideally pay for public schools, but it just doesn't cover everything any more. I just don't get this attitude. FTR, I work for a foundation that raises money for public schools, so I know about the shortages in public school budgets.
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#11 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 10:35 PM
 
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They vetoed them because of the things they where wanting ie higher priced items and things like hand sanitizer and kleenex. The schools here are given money for the soap and kleenex and the asking for high priced items was what got the lists vetoed.

If they had just been asking for X number of folders, pencils etc it wouldnt have been a problem since parents buy that stuff any way we just need to know how many.

 
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#12 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 11:09 PM
 
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I'm in Ohio
Our PS HS uses the city busses with reduced fair passes. We are also land of charter schools. DPS has 6 highschools, 2 alternative schools, a technology, and a college prep. 24 pK-8, and 33 charter schools. And 2 high risk "life skills" style campuses for teens and young adults.

To the best of my knowledge, aside from 1, which is a school for the arts, they don't charge for anything. I know Ohio you can open enroll in any school in your district. You can even enroll in private school if you are in an under preforming school.

So there are options in my area. And there are a lot of programs for families who can't afford what costs they do have. Scholarships, gov't programs, vouchers etc.

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#13 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 11:17 PM
 
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I'm in South Dakota. We buy the general school supplies at the beginning of the year. We have a local charity that distributes free backpacks and school supplies at the beginning of the year for families that can't afford it. No verification on need or income needed, but you must bring you child with to pick it up.

Families are asked for a $1 or $2 for field trips and class parties. My son attends a school with a number of low income families and if families can't come up with the money it's never a big deal. I'm on the PTA and we try to cover a lot of that stuff from the PTA fundraisers. The school also routinely applies for grants for activities to be provided for free. So this year our school got a grant for fruit and veggie snacks, we also use some extra title one funding to pay for some family nights at school, ect.

In our old school we didn't have title one funding, but it was a higher income school district and they had more successful PTA fund raising as a result so rarely had to charge for much there either.

Busing is free.

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#14 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 11:21 PM
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I teach in CA, and we have foundations (kinda nice/fancy area where I teach) that work really hard to raise money to pay for all kinds of programs. So they are always fundraising. They also put on awesome luncheons twice a year for the teachers, with door prizes I like that part!

Some of the honors English classes have had kids buy their books, so they can annotate them; they have a night at a bookstore with discounts, but of course it's not REQUIRED and the kids can still check out the books and use post its-- seems a bit fishy to me and I only did it one year b/c the kids REALLY wanted to have their own books to just write in. I still felt VERY odd about some kids being singled out with library texts.

The schools here are very aware of not charging for things, because they know some political groups will jump on that, if we violate "free and public education." That said, we teachers of course still ask for people to send in boxes of tissues and paper towels and hand sanatizer, b/c the kids don't carry hankies like I do, they spill their energy drinks they're not allowed to have in the classroom, and they come to school terribly sick. And I buy some at the start of the year but MAN we go through it fast and I hate to be buying that stuff for the kids. I do have some pen/cils and paper-- you would not believe all the upper middle class kids who come to class daily with an iphone, a backpack full of food, designer clothes, etc, but no paper. They end up trading gentle mocking for it, though (the folder with the paper has a sign about "wow you came to English class with no paper, really?" and the pens have enormous flowers on the tops). At the same time, I make it VERY clear that if someone is in a situation where their family really can't afford supplies, they should come to me privately if they like and I will set them up for the whole term. Because I have had students like that in my old district, and it's heartbreaking.

Kids still have to pay lab fees most places. I remember having to buy special PE clothes and pay for taking shop class, like that. Certainly for special things like band or performance troupes, for singing, etc, there are associated costs.

I think it's a bit wobbly. Schools are supposed to have wavers and scholarships but I imagine if a parent made a big stink they couldn't really charge them for their kid being in something... at the same time, the focus is MUCH more on "we want the best for our kids and this is what it's going to take, we've got to step up and get it done for them, not let them suffer b/c CA's education budget is a joke."
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#15 of 140 Old 08-05-2010, 11:21 PM
 
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OH - snooty neighborhood, rising 3rd grader

$25 activities fee (required, I suspect waiveable for hardship)
~$40 very specific supplies list. No one checks carefully if you don't bring it in, though it is very much expected (and they'd run short of a few things, requesting one item per kid)
~$25/year for field trips (paid for by PTO, but they ask that you cover your kid's cost. Not required, but...)

Snack for 24 kids ~15 school days per year (<- I go super cheap with things like popcorn in baggies)

Add PTO membership ($15/yr, only way to get the school directory), pictures (minimum $15), yearbook ($20), Christmas gifts and end-of-year gift and teacher appreciation stuff coordinated by room mom: ~$30/year

Occasional after school activities all cost, too.

Busing is free if you live in the neighborhood boundary of the school but more than 2 miles from the school. That covers .... no one, since every school is in the middle of a 1.5 mile radius neighborhood. (Busing will be covered for DD to travel between middle school and HS for math; later between HS and the uni)

I haven't heard anything about renting textbooks.
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#16 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 01:49 AM
 
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I wanted to start a thread on this very topic when I came here tonight because I was feeling that the fees/supply lists for my 2 DDs is excessive--and from reading the replies to this thread it seems many would agree. The fees aren't technically required but are built into the budget so if they aren't paid other areas of the schools will have to reduce their budgets and are waived for students who recieve free or reduced lunch.

For DD1 entering 6th grade in a middle school this year: Fees $309 which includes the fee for a 5 day outdoor lab program--I am not sure if it includes all fieldtrips. The following is her supply list:

* Two 2-inch D-ring binders with pockets in the front and back.
(NO ZIPPERED TRAPPERS!!)
* Five 2-pocket folders that are three-holed punched (plastic folders are
the most durable)
* Two 2-pocket folders with brads
* One large ream of wide-ruled loose-leaf notebook paper per trimester
* Three 200 page composition books, wide ruled
* Two black “Sharpie” ultra-fine tipped markers
* An abundant supply of pencils with erasers (please sharpen before
school begins)
* Several dark blue or black ink pens
* Two highlighting pens of different colors
* A set of colored pencils (a set of 12 will be adequate)
* A set of fine lined colored markers (a set of 10 will be adequate)
* Two red pens for grading
* A roll of scotch tape
* Several glue sticks
* One 8oz. bottle of Elmer’s glue
* A ruler with standard and metric markings
* Scissors
* Flash drive (zip drive) –minimum 2GB
* A zippered pencil bag or pencil box
* Two boxes of tissue (to be turned in to Advise teacher)
* A basic inexpensive calculator
* Two packages of 5 tabbed dividers
* Disposable camera
* Two fine tipped dry erase markers
* One package of 1 x 1 and one package of 3 x 3 Post-it notes
* Last names starting with A-D Paper towels
E-H Quart size zip lock bags
I-M Sanitized Wipes
N-S Sandwich size zip lock bags
T-Z Gallon size Zip lock bags

Optional donations:
Scrapbook paper, fun stickers, shaped scissors



For DD2 entering second grade: Fees: $50 plus optional $4.00 for music, art and field day. And the following supply list (no names on anything)
4 packages #2 pencils, 2 packages thin dry erase markers, 8 glue sticks, 2 wide rule spiral notebooks, red and blue, 1 primary picture space composition book, 1 box 64 crayons, 12 colored pencils, 12 inch ruler, 2 pairs of scissors, 2 each plastic folders with pockets and prongs red, blue, green, yellow, purple, 1 box gallon ziplock bags, 4 sharpies (black or blue), 1 box thin crayola markers, 1 pencil sharpener, 1 package wide rule notebook paper, 1 each highlighters , pink, yellow, green, 1 calculator (this is the one item that should have a name on it), 1 box tissues, 1 box medium or large bandaid, white view binder 1 1/2 inch with 5 dividers For art: sketch book, box of colored markers, For music: 1 red folder with pockets, Girls: 1 package sharpened pencils, Boys 2 thin tipped dry erase markers any color.



In addition to all of this I will end up purchasing supplies my own students don't have as well as tissues, snacks and supplies for classroom activities throughout the year.
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#17 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 02:36 AM
 
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An entering 1st grader and an entering 4th grader.

They have a 'recommended' supply list that will cost us about $20-30 per kid. Less if I remember to buy the loss leaders from Office Depot, etc.

That's it.

Our school is a Title I school and low income. They really don't expect parents to provide anything (over 80% are free/reduced lunch). I usually send in extra school supplies because some families really can't afford them.

They ask for a contribution toward field trips and other small things. It's a small amount they ask for ($5, I usually send $10). The PTO raises money throughout the year, and we contribute toward that.

Starting in high school, I know that activity fees can get really pricey. The schools have no money for coaches, uniforms, transportation.

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#18 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 02:52 AM
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Originally Posted by annettemarie View Post
I guess I always assumed it was a federal mandate for free public schools (and again, I wish I could remember from Foundations in Education where that mandate came from), and hadn't thought it was at the discretion of individual states.
I don't ever recall reading that public school was required to be free. The Federal government leaves most of the legislation up to individual states, and that includes how much of education is publicly funded. The Republican party tried more than once to get rid of the Federal Dept. of Ed altogether, deeming it an unconstitutional intrusion into state and family business.

I know that because our laws require kids to be educated, people feel that school should be free. Our laws also require kids to be fed and sheltered, but that doesn't mean food and housing is free.

ETA: I went to public school in Hawaii (a hundred years ago, so my memory might not be the greatest). We had a supply list every year, both for personal supplies and classroom supplies. We had to buy a gym uniform starting in 7th grade. I think typing students had to provide their own paper, and if you studied higher math, a scientific calculator was necessary. We never had textbooks fees or yearly student fees, AFAIK.

The biggest stink I ever heard about was actually regarding our high school graduation, because girls were required to wear white dresses and boys were required to wear white dress shirts and dark trousers under our ceremonial gowns. Some families balked at that.
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#19 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 02:59 AM
 
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We have "book fees" of about $80-$150 depending on the grade and a list of supplies. You can apply for free/reduced lunches and free books (the income guidelines are really high).

I have no problem with a school supply list that asks for Crayola crayons. Nearly every store around here sells them for 25 cents a box at this time of year. As far as I'm concerned, there is no other crayon. lol

Oh, and I'm in Indiana.

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#20 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 03:26 AM
 
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WI here, and my son is entering 1st grade. We're required to pay:

$47 for school/textbook fees
~$40 in school supplies (including some things for general classroom use, like dry erase markers, kleenex) + an extra pair of tennis shoes to be kept at school (listed as absolutely necessary)
~$25 for field trip fees

Snack and Lunch cost about $4 a day, and we are asked to send in several boxes of snack foods for the classroom for kids who forget/can't afford a morning snack.

It certainly adds up!
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#21 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 03:45 AM
 
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My high schoolers have regular supply things plus the $100 calculator they need for homework(the school has a classroom set but they can't be taken home), it is reccommended that all English lit books are purchased so they can be written it, lab fees, AP tests, orchestra, athletics, etc.

My elementary schooler is another story. It's our fault for sending him to an EL school but as well as all the regular supplies others have posted (thumb drives included) he needs a sleeping bag rated to 20F, sleeping pad, ski socks, 2 pairs of long underwear, hat, neck gator, 2 pairs of ski gloves, mess kit, head lamp, travel pillow.....

We are in CO - 49th in school funding
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#22 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 04:55 AM
 
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I graduated from the Chicago Public High School system in 2008.

Each of my four years, we were required to pay a mandatory activity fee of somewhere around $70. I'm not sure what happened if you didn't pay- I'm pretty sure the school charged a debt to your student account and you needed to pay by the end of your senior year to get your diploma.

We also had to pay for PE uniforms which were mandatory, gym locker locks (mandatory or they'd throw your stuff away), your student ID, lanyard for your ID, school supplies, a clear or mesh backpack, and countless other things that I can't seem to think of at the moment.

ETA: Also needed the graphing calculator, mandatory.

Instruments were free of charge But you had to sign them out and if you didn't bring them back, say hello to a debt on your student account. Same with textbooks. Cha-ching.

Edited to add AGAIN...

Our supply lists ALWAYS required a roll of paper towels and a box of kleenex. Sometimes a box of baby wipes, depended on the teacher.

Also, in high school each teacher would have their own supply list for you.. for instance, some teachers would require you to get a composition notebook, which were more expensive than the regular ones, just because they like how they stack up and are less messy. Another one of my teachers wanted a specific type of binder, this type of binder happened to be more expensive than the rest of them. One teacher required USB flash drives when they were first coming onto the market, and they were more expensive.

ALSO We had to buy our locks for our regular lockers, which HAD to be the overpriced ones from the school with the keyhole on the back so the school could get to it w/o cutting it off to search your locker.

I'm sure I could write a book on what we paid for.

We took public transportation but that was discounted.

Sports teams had to buy their own uniforms (for soccer I needed cleats and shin guards.. cha-ching.)

We were required to pay for activities and dances and field trips, of course, during elementary AND high school.

rainbow1284.gif Mama to DD1 (6) DD2 (4) and DD3 (1)
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#23 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 09:28 AM
 
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We are in Virginia and DD is entering 1st grade, so we did Kindergarten at another school so I had no idea about supply lists until another recent thread and so looked ours up:

1 box of tissues
24 # 2 pencils - sharpened
1 pair of kid-size scissors (Fiskars preferred)
6 large glue sticks
2 large bottles of Elmer's glue (no gel glue, please!)
1 box of Crayola crayons(24 crayons)
2 boxes of 8 washable markers (non-smelly)


1 package of stickers (student choice)

Not too bad but then there is, apparently, another list that will supplied by the teacher.

I grew up in California and do not recall ever having to buy supplies, except a gym uniform (and if you were below a certain income, it was free), and once or twice the cost of a bus to go on a field trip if we did not have enough "minority" kids going.


Apparently doing it rong and ruining it for everyone, but I don't give a crap anymorebanana.gif

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#24 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 10:17 AM
 
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Originally Posted by 2xy View Post
I don't ever recall reading that public school was required to be free. The Federal government leaves most of the legislation up to individual states, and that includes how much of education is publicly funded. The Republican party tried more than once to get rid of the Federal Dept. of Ed altogether, deeming it an unconstitutional intrusion into state and family business.

I know that because our laws require kids to be educated, people feel that school should be free. Our laws also require kids to be fed and sheltered, but that doesn't mean food and housing is free.

ETA: I went to public school in Hawaii (a hundred years ago, so my memory might not be the greatest). We had a supply list every year, both for personal supplies and classroom supplies. We had to buy a gym uniform starting in 7th grade. I think typing students had to provide their own paper, and if you studied higher math, a scientific calculator was necessary. We never had textbooks fees or yearly student fees, AFAIK.

The biggest stink I ever heard about was actually regarding our high school graduation, because girls were required to wear white dresses and boys were required to wear white dress shirts and dark trousers under our ceremonial gowns. Some families balked at that.
I totally agree. In situations when parents can't afford to buy the supplies or pay the fees I am confident that in every school district there are funds in place to help those families. I just don't get the resentment with having to spend a little extra money to support your child's education and/or help their teacher. The PTAs work really hard to fill the gaps, as do the Educational Foundations (in districts that have them), but they are just not making up the gap.

I also don't understand the thinking that the school administrators and teachers and looking through the supply catalogs and picking the most expensive options on items to just screw over the parents. It just isn't happening. They have done this for years, they know things you don't know, they probably know that comp pad A that costs $1.00 will only hold up for 4 months but if you buy the Mead comp pad for $1.25 it will hold up for the entire school year, thats why the specify it. Why not work with the teachers and schools instead of starting off immediately thinking they are scheming against you? It starts the whole relationship off bad when the teacher gets half of what she asks for because half of the parents didn't follow the list because they wanted to save $3.00. This is your kids education and with the expectation that I am sure you are all going to have for the teachers and school the whole year is it really a lot to ask to follow the list? Its just a pet peeve of mine. No, I am not a teacher.
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#25 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 10:33 AM
 
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We aren't really paying much. We have a small list of school supplies to get and there's always clothes/shoes that we buy as well.

School lunches are cheap, breakfast is free and field trips are usually free as well. But my kid's only now starting third grade, so I'm sure we'll be paying more in future.
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#26 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 11:18 AM
 
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No, we don't pay a huge amount directly to the school. I do note that $5k/year of our property taxes to the school district (and we're in one of the cheapest houses in town). The local Catholic school is less than that per year. (Indep privates, though, are $20k/year). I know that DD's education is practically a steal in comparison to finding the same education privately. Hey, even if I were to home school, I'd probably spend more than $2.5k per kid (DS will enter public in another year).

I don't mind paying my share of teacher gifts, field trips, etc, but I do kind of mind having to dribble it out $3 at a time.

I don't mind the supplies costs. Indeed, not only do they not require top-of-the-line stuff, our PTO pre-buys most of it, lays it out in an organized fashion in the gym, and we can buy it there (total cost is ~$5 more than what we'd get at Target). I kinda wish we could bypass a lot of the silly steps: I can't just write the school a check to cover the directory, school supplies, field trips, teacher gifts, etc. I have to go to the gym and collect the supplies and pay for it. Take it home. Take it to the classroom 2 days later (during the day, the week before school starts). Write a check for each of the field trips the week of each trip. Write out another check to be delivered to someone's house for the directory.

A lot of how the school runs kinda assumes I have a lot of time to deal with the logistics of it during the business day. I actually mind how they ask for the money more than the fact that I'm paying it. The time/hassle cost exceeds the dollar cost for me.

I am curious on the point of a right to a free public education. Section 504 ensures a "free and appropriate" education for disabled students. I'm kinda curious now if non-disabled students have such a right. DD is on a WEP, which I think is a state level requirement for kids getting the services she gets.
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#27 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 11:21 AM
 
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We homeschool but I'm happy to pay taxes for public schooling. I am not certain what the cost situation is around here; I think the bus is free and certainly they have lists of basic supplies to bring in but I think they are very basic. No uniforms in our district.

I'm writing in to say what really bugs me about public school funding. And that is that it's based on districts. So poor districts get completely shafted, while ritzy districts get computers and field trips and so on.

While there would still be a lot of inequity between states, I think funding should be by state rather than district. Schools in a given state should all enjoy roughly the same resources, obviously adjusted for school size and so on.

So, anyway, that's what disturbs me. If America is supposedly the Land of Opportunity for us all, why are our schools funded in a way that is so blatantly classist and racist and so on?

Homeschooling mama to 6 year old DD.

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#28 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 11:29 AM
 
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Our school last year had a text book fee (I think $40 per child) that was waved if a family was on free or reduced lunch program.

School supply list were *recommended* but not required, and most supplies were pooled by class, so there was a big pile of packages of note book paper and that all the kids could use, whether or not they had brought any in.

A child could go to school there without bringing in anything or paying anything.

Our school had a VERY diverse economic base and tried to be sensitive to it. In middle school, they worked hard to keep activities, including sports, very cheap or free so that all the kids who wanted to could participate. (Cheerleading only cost me $17 out of pocket).

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#29 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 11:52 AM
 
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My school is public, but a charter that does not get local funding; they also require uniforms (school shirt, brown or black belt, khaki pants, school bag). I spent about $60 but that may include the extras I'm keeping home because ds is not careful with supplies). There is a $150 book fee but that is for K-12, we do not pay it every year.

There were no fees at ds' school last year but there were 2 book fairs, class craft projects, and several class parties of some sort.

48-#2 pencils (basic yellow)
2-bottles of white glue
3-Large boxes of facial tissue
1-pack of pencil cap eraser
5-primary composition books (hardback)
1-Container of antibacterial wipes
1-pack of 12x18 construction paper (multi)
5-Plastic pocket folders with brads (solid colors only-no pictures or words)
2-packs of broad tip markers
1-school box for pencils, crayons etc.. (5x8 or 6x9)
1-pair of child safe scissors
2-boxes of crayons
2-packs of index cards
1-4 pack of dry erase markers
1-pack 9x12 Manila Paper 50 ct.
2-bottles waterless hand sanitizer
5-one subject wide ruled spiral bound notebook (solid colors only-no pictures or words)
School Bag- no other bag will be acceptable. (Cost is $10.00-can be purchased through the front office.)

Art Supplies

1st Grade:
1 12 count pack of pencils
1 pack 24 crayons
1 pack washable markers
1 Clorox clean up wipes
1 8 pan watercolor set
1 pack construction paper
2 standard white posters

Health
12 ct. Pencils
Folder (labeled with child’s name and loose leaf paper inside)
24 ct. Crayons

"It should be a rule in all prophylactic work that no harm should ever be unnecessarily inflicted on a healthy person (Sir Graham Wilson, The Hazards of Immunization, 1967)."
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#30 of 140 Old 08-06-2010, 11:58 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WindyCityMom View Post
Also, in high school each teacher would have their own supply list for you.. for instance, some teachers would require you to get a composition notebook, which were more expensive than the regular ones, just because they like how they stack up and are less messy. .
I once had a professor that required a very specific size notebook because they all had to fit in his bag.

"It should be a rule in all prophylactic work that no harm should ever be unnecessarily inflicted on a healthy person (Sir Graham Wilson, The Hazards of Immunization, 1967)."
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