I have a love/hate relationship with the end of summer

I love sleeping in, not worrying about homework, and staying up too late with my kids (it doesn’t even get dark until 10 p.m.). At the same time, I hate the lack of education, the wasted mornings sleeping in (see, love/hate) and the purchasing of school supplies. No matter how I feel about it, the summer is ending and the new school year is about to begin… and I need to buy school supplies.

This year, instead of printing off the school supply lists and marching off to the the store, I decided to ask a few questions first. I called the high school, the middle school and the elementary school and asked them-

  1. Who creates the list of school supplies for each class?
  2. Are there any additional class fees (for electives, honors classes, etc.)?
  3. What should a parent do, if they can’t afford to buy supplies?

When I asked the school how the teachers determined what supplies their students needed for the school year, I was surprised to learn that the teachers do not write the classroom supply list. The list was created by the district. Sometimes an individual teacher will make a special request of his/her students, but the supply list is determined at a district level.

Who creates your child’s school supply list?

In response to my question about additional class fees, I was informed that due to a lawsuit filed against the West Ada School District, class fees are no longer charged (within the district).

Do your schools charge additional class fees?

I asked what the school does for students who can’t afford to purchase school supplies. The secretary told me it was not mandatory for a student to bring supplies, but requested. If a student didn’t bring supplies, the teacher would still need those supplies.

If a student needs assistance, they should talk to the school counselor. Many schools have supplies to give to those in need (thanks to the Assistance League of Boise and the Operation School Supplies). Some schools even have supplies to give to students throughout the year.

If your schools do not have supplies to give to students in need, you can request assistance from local churches, Fill the Bus (for students in Nampa),  Back 2 School Giveaway (for students in South East Idaho) and the Boise Salvation Army.

Does your town offer school supplies for students in need? Do you have other ideas to share? 

Enjoy the final days of summer and good luck shopping for school supplies. Maybe I’ll see you at the store (but not early in the morning, I’ll be sleeping in).

Melanie Flake

Melanie Flake

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