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  #1  
July 24th, 2011, 04:18 PM
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Are shared school supplies fair to all students and families? Would you be upset about shared supplies? If so, how upset would you be on a scale of 1-10 (10 most upset, 1 just a little upset)?

DD's school does shared supplies for ALL grades, ALL supplies. Including items intended for personal use (homework folders, communication binders, daily folder). DD is having a *very* hard time understanding that she most likely will not be able to use the blue folders that she picked out. I'm very willing to donate extra supplies to the classroom, but I'm very upset that DD can't use the folders she picks out. I can't give her a good reason why she can't buy the graphic folders and binders (the dogs, cats, toy story, etc). And chances are she wont be able to use the solid colored ones she picks out either. Aside from that is the brand - quality issue. :/ Ya know - spend extra for plastic prong folders and have her come home with a paper prong folder that lasts a few weeks before looking like crap! On top of that, I've been told that teachers will CROSS OUT a child's name written on products and write another child's name on the supply. I can't even begin to explain how angry I would be to have that come home. I'd purchase a new product.
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  #2  
July 24th, 2011, 04:27 PM
tiredmom's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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My oldest starts Kindergarten this fall. They do only shared supplies. They made a point of telling us this early on, so that all the supplies will be similar and what they want. They also asked us to make sure the kids were aware of this, so the kids don't get attached to whichever products we are buying. So far I think it sounds like a great policy; but theses are products that will stay at school and not come home with the kids in the evenings.

edit: just saw my typo of theses. Sounds like Jesus with a lisp. Should have been 'these'.
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Last edited by tiredmom; July 25th, 2011 at 04:29 PM.
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  #3  
July 24th, 2011, 04:32 PM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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Our schools purchase the supplies themselves. they're all identical. they're all the same quality. The parents are required to pay for them via school fees. The first year there was a fuss, but then parents realized that the schools get the items much cheaper than ANY store sale since the entire district gets together and buys them in major bulk. It's only for K-2, after that you supply the products.

I'm surprised in your case that the teachers didn't advise you that the products had to be a certain brand, color etc, so that way everything matches everyone else. Our schools banded together to do it, to make sure everyone had the SAME, rather than some parents being sneaky and going fancy and causing problems in class (aka stealing. Yes, Kindergardeners steal)
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  #4  
July 24th, 2011, 04:34 PM
Tammyjh's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I can understand why some would be bothered by this and if this (shared supplies) is something you did not know beforehand though.

So, my upset meter would be 5 or 6 if I was not informed that the supplies were shared and my child would not get to use special folders/supplies he/she bought. It would be a real bummer but we could deal with it easy enough I think.

Upset meter would be around 1 if I knew about shared supplies before heading out to the store.
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  #5  
July 24th, 2011, 04:40 PM
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Thankfully our school doesn't do this because I would be upset if my kids didn't get to use the products that I specifically bought for them not some other kid.

I'm failing to see the point of this system....
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  #6  
July 24th, 2011, 04:55 PM
Repti.Mom's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I'd probably say a 1, we already have to pick out certain stuff, solid colored folders only certain pens, pencils etc. I think some of it is shared already too, like dry erase markers and stuff. I think it would probably save some parents a bit of money too, and it probably saves embarrassment for kids who can't bring "fancy" stuff to school or can't bring anything at all! No one knows whose is whose. I always end up tossing stuff at the end of the year anyway that they send home. Of course that is probably just me and my clutter issues
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  #7  
July 24th, 2011, 05:00 PM
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I don't consider the shared supplies you are describing okay at all. I would be okay with kicking in some money for shared supplies for the class/grade and I'd be perfectly fine with buying a few more folders/supplies to donate to the class. But if I bought something for my kid and then found out it might be given to someone else, I'd be very upset. I know shared supplies has a lot of benefits (someone mentioned stealing, which was a problem in my school as well) but they really should inform parents ahead of time.
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  #8  
July 24th, 2011, 05:56 PM
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My son's school does shared supplies to a degree. Pens, pencils, crayons, markers, glue and stuff like that gets shared. Folders, notebooks and binders are individualized. Because they do get to keep their own notebooks and what not, I don't mind about the shared products so much. I do get annoyed when certain name brands are expected and when some kids are asked to bring more than others. I do my best follow the list provided to my son, but if I feel things are out of line, I will not purchase them.
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  #9  
July 24th, 2011, 06:04 PM
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How upset I'd be would be determined on whether or not I knew this in advance. If I already knew, I'd have no reason to be upset at all. If I didn't know I might be a little miffed, but not much. Pretty minor annoyance really.

When my kids were still in ps some of the grades had shared supplies. Those shared supplies they requested only certain brands/kinds/colors, for good reason. It was mostly crayons, markers and pencils they requested certain brands on. Things like crayons, glue, markers, scissors, pencils, colored pencils, dry erase markers, erasers, etc... all small stuff. Nothing cutesy, or with names on it or anything like that. All pretty standard stuff and all relatively cheap too.

Things like notebooks, paint sets, and plastic folders(or anything more expensive) were only for your child's use though, not shared. They were never allowed paper folders, I think that was one of the most expensive supplies we ever had to provide, because they needed one for every subject. If the class/teacher needed more, they would ask. They'd send home a little note "Hey, we've been so hard at work we're running out of..." and there would be a list. Usually things like glue, loose leaf notebook paper, crayons, are things they'd run out of. Teachers had their own stock too, but lots of parents still send in extras just in case.
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  #10  
July 24th, 2011, 07:21 PM
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I had a friend who was complaining about this at her kid's school last year. The school started doing shared supplies and one of the things they had to bring in was crayons. She sent in several packs of Crayola crayons and her DD ended up getting the crappy $ Store crayons that don't color very well and the DD was upset. I would have been annoyed too because I hate crappy crayons!

I think if schools are going to do shared supplies then they need to ask for specific brands/colors so everyone ends up with the same quality stuff.
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  #11  
July 24th, 2011, 07:54 PM
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School supplies are on my list of things that annoy me right now. We had shared supplies for my son in Kindergarten. His teacher was quite disorganized and even at the end of the year, there were still piles and piles of random supplies tossed all over a table. We had to send in 2 or 3 (can't remember now) boxes of crayons, yet when I would be at the school to help they were only a dozen or so crayons in each caddy for 5-6 kids per table to share. His journal entries would have words crossed out because he said they never had erasers, even though we had to send them in. They had to bring in 4 folders and they were never used, nothing came home at the end of the year either. I don't mind buying stuff, if they are actually going to use it.

The school supplies is just one more thing in my complaint about this school. I want to MOVE!

I'd be really ticked to have supplies go home with one kid one day and another on another day. The idea of not knowing where things were kept creeps me out, not to mention I'd not want anything coming to our hose smelling all smokey.
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  #12  
July 24th, 2011, 07:58 PM
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Lily's school asks for specific brands. Of course, not everyone bought the brands they requested last year. The few things she had for her own self didnt really matter what brand they were. The things that matter are communal.

Honestly, I would rather buy my children their supplies and restock them as they run out, at least I know their supplies are good. The communal supplies may help things from getting lost... but it usually means some kid is stuck with the crappy supplies.

Here is Lil's supplies for this year:
DO NOT LABEL
3 Dozen sharpened Ticonderoga pencils
2 Black thin tip Expo Dry Erase markers
2 Large Elmer’s glue sticks
1 Box Crayola wide tip washable markers
1 Box Crayola colored pencils – count 12
Boys - 1 box gallon size Ziplock bags
Girls - 1 box sandwich size Ziplock bags
2 Large boxes Kleenex
Girls - 1 Container disinfectant wipes
Boys - 1 Pump hand sanitizer
5 Solid colored bottom pocket folders (3 red, 2 blue, 2 yellow)
Boys – 1 pkg. large sticky notes
Girls – 1 pkg. small sticky notes
PLEASE LABEL
1 Box Crayola crayons – count 24
4 Pink erasers
1 Fiskar brand scissors
2 Primary ruled composition notebooks
2 Wide ruled spiral notebooks
1 Small supply box

See how they ask for the nice pencils? We got those for Lily last year. I personally prefer mechanical and she does her homework with mechanical, but I know not all schools allow them. Well we got her the nice pencils last year, and she was just about the only student that bought that brand despite it being on the list. So she was always using the crappy pencils. I don't know about you all, but crayons, pencils, and markers are the supplies I always buy the best with because it DOES make a huge difference! I just hate when my own kid gets stuck with crap!
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  #13  
July 24th, 2011, 08:13 PM
plan4fate's Avatar I may bend, but not break
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that's why our school just collected funds and got the stuff themselves. then there was no one with the crappy things. That had been a problem the prior years, and one teacher used to say they were pooling, then not pool at all. It was a way to make sure the parents got what she requested, or their own kid got stuck with the crap. I was her classroom helper one year and she had so many upset parents. One even said she didn't want to pay for the good things for some other kid, so she'd bought crappy thinking her own would get the good stuff
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  #14  
July 24th, 2011, 08:45 PM
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I'm the poor mom who can't afford brand name stuff. I hate when the schools make you feel ****** for not bringing in the "right" supplies. I don't get crappy stuff, but I do go off brand for some things and do feel they're of equal quality. Obviously, some off brands suck, but they honestly don't cost much less than the off brand names that don't suck.

I just feel that I can't really contribute to everyone else's kids when I can barely afford my own each year. It wasn't like this last year, because I had a job, but this year, MAN, I just have to get the bare minimum and for 4 kids, so there will be no contributing on my family's part to a communal supply basket.
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  #15  
July 25th, 2011, 05:29 AM
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I think I'd rather just give the school money, they get discounts on those kind of things at Staples and other stores, so it would make sense. But I have no problem with shared school supplies. If my kid really had his heart set on a certain folder, I'd just buy it for him to use at home.
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  #16  
July 25th, 2011, 05:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GSLynn View Post
I'm the poor mom who can't afford brand name stuff. I hate when the schools make you feel ****** for not bringing in the "right" supplies. I don't get crappy stuff, but I do go off brand for some things and do feel they're of equal quality. Obviously, some off brands suck, but they honestly don't cost much less than the off brand names that don't suck.

I just feel that I can't really contribute to everyone else's kids when I can barely afford my own each year. It wasn't like this last year, because I had a job, but this year, MAN, I just have to get the bare minimum and for 4 kids, so there will be no contributing on my family's part to a communal supply basket.
THis is what bothers me about school supplies. Parents should be made to feel like crap b/c they can't buy the name brands. Off brand can and are just as good. I've never used Crayola products - they always seem like the first to break or wear out. I was very glad to see walmart's plastic and paper folders were equally priced (15 cents).
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  #17  
July 25th, 2011, 05:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Repti.Mom View Post
I'd probably say a 1, we already have to pick out certain stuff, solid colored folders only certain pens, pencils etc. I think some of it is shared already too, like dry erase markers and stuff. I think it would probably save some parents a bit of money too, and it probably saves embarrassment for kids who can't bring "fancy" stuff to school or can't bring anything at all! No one knows whose is whose. I always end up tossing stuff at the end of the year anyway that they send home. Of course that is probably just me and my clutter issues
But the kids STILL know whose is whose. Even if they ask for "plain" folders - kids still remember what color they come to school with.

Additionally, uniforms were enacted at DD's school to avoid the money/class issue. Now its school supplies too. So IDK...its just frustrating b/c I want to donate (and have bought extra supplies to donate) b/c I don't want joey to go to school without supplies and be embarrassed).

IDK - I was alright - not upset - with the community supplies b/c I was going to bring a set for DD and an extra set to share. At least of stuff I know will be going to and from school in her backpack. But after learning teachers will intentionally cross out a kids name and write another child's name on it is beyond me. I'm a upset. Silly, yes. Our list also isn't very specific aside from Crayola crayons and markers.
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  #18  
July 25th, 2011, 06:01 AM
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Lynn, they have a thing here that the Optimist Club puts on that gives away free school supplies. I have gone a couple years (when I didn't miss it). The kids can go with you and they give them a sticker with the school year they are, and a bag, and they get to pick out the stuff from a table that they need that correlates with their grade and school. Some schools ask for different stuff here too, which is silly. Of course then you still need to supply gym shoes, and kleenex and hand sanitizer (which I hate.. why does my kid need to have germaphobe instilled on him/her?) so you have to spend some money, but not AS much. It's a great program.
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  #19  
July 25th, 2011, 08:17 AM
Fluffy Baby's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I would be upset the stuff I bought for MY DD goes to some other kid.
Here, we can buy the supplies ourselves or give $10 to the teacher for supplies.
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  #20  
July 25th, 2011, 10:17 AM
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I really don't get the purpose of this commie supply system. They could have a donation pot for families that don't have the money but I make money to spend on my kids, MY KIDS.

I send mine to a private school and to be honest there are no poor families going to this private Catholic school but they still do this up til a certain grade.
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