- A new analysis by TeacherLists found that students are required to purchase an average of $70.93 worth of school supplies at the start of the year — more than in previous years.
- In general, middle and high schools had shorter but more expensive lists at $91 and $157 respectively than their elementary school counterparts.
- The company looked at over 300,000 supply lists and found that common items included tissues, hand wipes, and hand sanitizer.
TeacherLists attributed the rising costs to cuts in school funds and the increased demand for expensive new tech items. Some lists for middle schools and high schools even included a required iPad purchase, which can cost upwards of $300. Other costs were more prosaic, such as graphing calculators.
The lists also included non-learning related items, such as the previously mentioned tissues. "For several years now, we've seen school supply lists become longer due to the addition of these new item categories," said Tim Sullivan, founder of TeacherLists. "As the lists grow longer, the total amount parents are spending rises."
The burden of school supply costs also falls heavily on teachers. In 2013, the average teacher spent almost $500 of their money on classroom supplies. Some states have tried to take action. Colorado tried to pass a tax credit for teachers' spending on supplies, but it failed to get past the legislature.