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Good Wednesday Morning, Fellow Seekers.
It might only be the beginning of August, but if you’re the parent or guardian of a school-age child, the chances are pretty good that you’re already thinking about a trip to the local big-box store for back-to-school supplies.
And you won’t be the only one: Already stressed and stretched by the pandemic, classroom teachers will be digging into their own pockets to make sure their students have such basics as pencils, paper, and books this school year, according to a new report.
Nationwide, teachers will spend $3.2 billion on their classrooms this year, or about an average of $820 each, according to My eLearning World, a publication focused on educators.
Meanwhile, teachers only will be allowed to deduct $300 towards those expenses on their federal tax returns, the report’s author, Scott Winstead, wrote.
“Surveys have shown that almost all teachers say they pay for supplies for their classrooms without getting reimbursed,” Winstead wrote. “And despite recent increases, the educator expense deduction still isn’t nearly enough to cover how much teachers have to spend.”
Teacher spending on classroom supplies has risen steadily over the last few years, Winstead wrote, hitting $750 in 2021.
According to Winstead, “teachers are now spending about 37 percent more on school supplies than they were back in 2015.”
“And this year as the cost of goods rises, our study shows things are only getting worse even with back to school sales going on,” he observed.
According to Winstead, the average teacher can expect to spend:
- $193.55 on non-consumable supplies (this includes books and software)
- $172.23 on classroom decor
- $142.70 on consumable supplies (this includes pencils and paper)
- $121.39 on food and snacks — a critical need in many districts
- $119.74 on prizes
- $70.53 on cleaning supplies
And even as their out-of-pocket spending has risen, teachers aren’t being paid competitive salaries, a factor that’s prompting many to leave the profession ahead of schedule.
“The problem has gotten so bad that many teachers across the country are turning to crowdfunding platforms like GoFundMe to raise money for their classrooms, but even then, some districts are expressing concern and disapproval because they’re unable to track the spending,” Winstead wrote.
Homeless camping bans are spreading. In a special report, our friends at Stateline.org shine a light on the group behind the bills.
On Tuesday, speaking exclusively to Fox News, U.S. Rep. Scott Perry, R-10th District, said federal investigators seized his cell phone the day after executing the search warrant at Mar-a-Lago. Capital-Star Washington Reporter Jacob Fischler has the story.
Heading into the fall campaign season, Republicans continue to erode the Democrats’ voter edge in the Lehigh Valley’s 7th Congressional District, where incumbent Democratic U.S. Rep Susan Wild is again facing Republican Lisa Scheller for the seat. Correspondent Katherine Reinhard has the story.
Despite the vast number of resources being used and protests taking place to combat Philadelphia’s gun violence epidemic, the city’s murder rate appears to be on pace to match or exceed last year’s totals, our partners at the Philadelphia Tribune report.
On our Commentary Page this morning: Opinion regular Michael Coard explains why he believes it won’t be long before WNBA star Brittney Griner is released from a Russian jail. And if they’re going to prevent future school shootings, educators need to be armed with data and information, not more guns, opinion regular Matthew T. Mangino writes.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano spent less than 15 minutes talking to the Jan. 6 committee on Tuesday, the Inquirer reports. Mastriano used legal maneuvers to abruptly end his conversation with the U.S. House panel, WITF-FM reports.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis will travel to Pittsburgh next week to campaign for Mastriano, the Post-Gazette reports.
Two Pennsylvania nursing homes have been accused of healthcare fraud, the Associated Press reports (via PennLive).
The Morning Call looks at the incentives that area businesses are offering to lure employees.
The Citizens’ Voice looks at the state’s new rules for tipped workers (paywall).
Philadelphia residents and city youth tell WHYY-FM that city leaders aren’t listening to their ideas for solving gun violence.
During a stop in Erie, U.S. Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., praised Senate passage of a landmark bill that fights climate change. GoErie has the story.
NYMag’s Intelligencer sifts through what’s known — and what isn’t — about the FBI’s search of Mar-a-Lago on Monday.
U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., one of 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach former President Donald Trump in January 2021, has conceded defeat in her primary contest, Roll Call reports.
Here’s your #Pennsylvania Instagram of the Day:
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9 a.m., Penn State University: House Veterans Affairs & Emergency Preparedness Committee
10 a.m., Pennsylvania Furnace, Pa: Joint meeting of the House & Senate Agriculture and Rural Affairs committees
10 a.m, Pittsburgh: House Democratic Policy Committee
As of this writing, Gov. Tom Wolf has no public schedule today.
After entirely too long a break, Scottish new wavers Altered Images are back with new music. Here’s the very Altered Images-y ‘Beautiful Thing.’
Wednesday’s Gratuitous Baseball Link
Baltimore slipped past the Toronto Blue Jays, winning 6-5 at home at Camden Yards on Tuesday night.
And now you’re up to date.
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