A new report from the National Center for Education Statistics (part of the U.S. Department of Education) finds that 94 percent of teachers spend their own money–not reimbursed–to equip their students and classes with needed supplies. These teachers, on average, spend $497 a year, with the median amount at $297.
Teachers do have the ability to deduct up to $250 on their tax returns for these expenditures, but that only amounts to about $30 to $60 in savings.
AFT President Randi Weingarten said in a statement to the Associated Press: “Educators want to help children; that is why as long as their kids lack the essentials, educators will continue to dig deep, while fighting the defunding and underinvestment that created this crisis in the first place. There is no other job I know where the workers subsidize what should be a cost borne by an employer as a necessary ingredient of the job.”