“You start wondering, ‘Is this going to affect my child’s learning?’ Which is ridiculous. But you want to meet the teacher’s specific demands,” she says. “Back in the day, I brought a pencil, a backpack and a lunchbox ... I love shopping, don’t get me wrong. But there are a million other things I’d rather be doing than searching for Duo-Tangs.”
She’s hardly alone. Thanks to ongoing classroom cuts, the list of must-have supplies keeps on growing – new this year at one school: photocopy paper – along with parental anxiety.
Spare me the "education cuts" business. Only in rare cases is this true. The real question is why are parents letting teachers bully them into buying a specific colour of folder for their kid??? Is their education really going to be impacted if they have a purple folder instead of a grey one? No. This is something being imposed by neurotic teachers who are probably obsessed with colour coding and organization. Obviously there are some tools kids need to learn (pencil, paper, markers, glue) - but these long lists full of ridiculous items are an unnecessary burden. These are probably the same teachers who insist kids need a SmartBoard in their classroom to learn. Yes, technology and colour coded folders are fun - but if your child has a good teacher they are simply bonuses in an already rich learning environment.
Don't waste your time searching through a dozen stores looking for a grey folder - spend some time reading with your child.