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Parents Spend Average of More Than $70 on Back-to-School Supplies

Classrooms require a lot, from learning materials to cleaning supplies, but what happens when the money just isn’t there? Often times, parents pay. 

Recently, the team at TeacherLists dove into 300,000 teacher supply lists from across the nation on their site to see what parents were providing when it came to K-12 classroom supplies.

The average cost of back-to-school supplies for elementary school supplies totals to $70.93 for 2015, with middle school supplies averaging at $91.14, and high school supplies hitting $157.58. The cause? Kids simply need more stuff for today’s classroom that schools aren’t providing. 

“For several years now, we’ve seen school supply lists become longer due to the addition of these new item categories,” said the founder of TeacherLists Tim Sullivan in a press release. “There are still great deals at back-to-school time which keep supply prices low. But as the lists grow longer, the total amount parents are spending rises.”

Increases in middle and high schools are typically due to higher-cost technology, such as tablets. The rise in elementary school supplies costs are being shown to come from a range of sanitation items, like hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes, and even items like tissues, the analysis showed. Added to the cost of traditional back-to-school supplies, such as writing utensils, folders, and other essentials, these newer classroom items create a need for bigger monetary educational investments from students' families. If the trend continues, they stand to climb year-over-year. 

While the lists get shorter from elementary, to middle, to high school items-wise, they also get more expensive as the years go up, mostly due to technology requirements that aren’t being funded by schools in higher grade levels, and other budgetary issues. 

“Lists are growing and parent and school budgets are tighter than ever,” Sullivan said. “Still, we’ve found that parents want their kids and their kids’ classrooms well-supplied for a great year full of learning opportunities. The school supply list is the start of that process, and parents are still in the habit of shopping to the lists every year.”

For more on this analysis of back-to-school supplies, visit here


Article by Jason Papallo, Education World Social Media Editor
Education World® 
Copyright © 2015 Education World

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