Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Trump Can’t Fight Anti-Semites. They’re His Base! by Steven Singer

“In a short time, a large number of Jews are going to be slaughtered. Their heads are going to [sic] blown off from the shrapnel. There’s a lot of shrapnel. There’s going to be a bloodbath that’s going to take place in a short time. I think I told you enough. I must go.”
This is one of at least 89 bomb threats at Jewish institutions since Donald Trump was inaugurated.
Just yesterday, alone, at least 21 Jewish community centers and Jewish day schools across the country received bomb threats.
So far, at least 72 Jewish cultural centers in 30 U.S. states and one Canadian province have been affected, according to the Jewish Community Center Association of North America.
Besides bomb threats, hundreds of graves at Jewish cemeteries were desecrated, there was a foiled massacre at a synagogue and swastika graffiti has dramatically increased in public spaces.
American Jews are victims of more reported hate crimes than any other group in the United States, and have been subject to the majority of religiously motivated offenses every year since the FBI started reporting these statistics in 1995.
Such offenses were not unknown in this country before Trump’s rise, but the rate is increasing.
This is consistent with a rise in hate crimes for all ethnic groups across the country. Southern Poverty Law Centre recorded more than 1,000 hate crimes in January alone – the same amount usually reported over a six-month period.
Far from helping the situation, Trump has made it worse.
His statement for Holocaust Remembrance Day deliberately left out any mention of Jewish people – a direct nod to Holocaust deniers everywhere.
At a press conference, an Orthodox Jewish reporter asked him about “an uptick in anti-Semitism and how the government is planning to take care of it.” Trump asked him to sit down, saying it was “not a fair question” and “I am the least anti-Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life.”
His supporters would cheerfully disagree. Ex-Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke is one of his biggest boostersWhite nationalists have been recorded literally shouting, “Hail Trump!” and making a gesture similar to the Hitler salute.
In fact, his entire Presidential campaign was predicated on race baiting and xenophobia. He has gone after undocumented immigrants, African Americans, Latinos, Asians, women, Muslims and the disabled.
He led the “birther” movement challenging President Obama’s standing as a natural-born American; used various vulgar expressions to refer to women; spoke of Mexico sending rapists and other criminals across the border; called for rounding up and deporting 11 million undocumented immigrants; had public feuds with prominent Latino journalists and news outlets; mocked Asian accents; let stand a charge made in his presence that Obama is a Muslim and that Muslims are a “problem” in America; embraced the notion of forcing Muslims to register in a database; falsely claimed thousands of Muslims celebrated the 9/11 attacks in New Jersey; tweeted false statistics asserting that most killings of whites are done by blacks; approved of beating up a black demonstrator at one of his events; and publicly mocked the movements of journalist Serge Kovaleski, who has a chronic condition limiting his mobility.
If that’s not prejudiced, racist and bigoted, I don’t know what is.
But when it comes to anti-Semitism, the situation gets complicated.
His supporters will counter that Trump can’t be anti-Semitic because his daughter, Ivanka, converted to Judaism to marry his son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner.
But does that really follow?
Trump appears either to be an anti-Semite, himself, or certainly to be tolerant of anti-Semitism.
Even Ivanka’s behavior is suspect. She offered the following strange tweet about recent bomb threats: “America is a nation built on the principle of religious tolerance. We must protect our houses of worship & religious centers. #JCC”.
On the surface of it, she’s asking for the violence to stop. But why is her only mention of Judaism an abbreviation in a hashtag? Doesn’t that minimize the point just like Trump’s Holocaust Remembrance Day message?
This appears to be a kind of plausible deniability.
It’s like a black person telling racist jokes about black people. We might let him get away with it because he’s black. We might say, It’s Okay because he can’t be prejudiced against black people.
However, actions speak louder than words. And Trump’s are clearly on the side of prejudice – even anti-Jewish prejudice.
The Alt Right movement tries to pull the same kind of thing with Breitbart News. The publication has been rife with anti-Jewish conspiracy theories, yet many of its editors and/or writers claim Jewish ancestry. Andrew Breitbart – the conservative media pundit for which the site is named and who died in 2012 – was Jewish. So were many of his colleagues and successors, among them former editor-in-chief Joel Pollak and former editor-at-large Ben Shapiro. Even former senior editor and provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos claims some Jewish ancestry.
Yet Breitbart is the publication of choice for Neo-Nazis and white supremacists. The organization is pushing an anti-Jewish agenda and appealing to racists and bigots as its readership.
The organization has published multiple articles denigrating minorities, championing white nationalism and denying the existence of anti-Semitism – or at very least claiming it only exists on the left.
Trump is deeply connected with the organization through his senior adviser Steve Bannon, one of its founders.
This is the same constituency that propelled the President into the national spotlight. It’s naive to ask Trump for help stop the wave of anti-Jewish hate crimes. The people perpetrating them are most likely his hard core supporters.
Though Trump eventually did make a weak denunciation of the bomb threats and anti-Semitic violence, he can’t be too forceful. He can’t send out a series of tweets critical of Nazis and white nationalists. He can’t turn to his supporters demanding peace. He needs them. They’re just about the only folks left who support him.
In the latest national Quinnipiac poll, only 38% of American voters approve of Trump’s job performance, while 55% disapprove. These are the lowest numbers for a new President in at least 40 years, according to the Washington Post.
If Trump proposes spending federal dollars to fight anti-Semitism with tolerance programs in schools, he’s bound to upset his base. If he appoints a special task force to catch those committing hate crimes, he’s going to anger the only reliable group committed to supporting his political agenda at the polls.
So instead we get half measures. He’ll make a Holocaust Remembrance Day statement – but not mention Jews. He might admit that anti-Semitism is bad but refuse to acknowledge that it still exists.
He’s hoping to make his statements vague enough to be interpreted in two ways. He hopes his critics will interpret them as asking to stop the violence, but he wants his supporters to interpret them as tacit agreement with their anti-Semitism.
This is the exact opposite of moral courage. And it is taking its toll on the Jewish community, and every other minority.

Monday, February 27, 2017

How Can We Look Our Kids In the Face? by Dr. Michael Flanagan

It was a nice summer night a couple of years ago, and my daughter was just learning to ride a bike. We were out in the parking lot of my building just as it was getting dark. I sat and watched her learn to steer and brake. A moment that is a touchstone in one’s life, that you hope your mind flashes back to when you leave this earth.

After a while she came and sat next to me and started talking about her life. “Where will I go to college?” “Where will I work?”

As I smiled, and said all the things a father is supposed to say like “Anywhere you want Honey. You can do whatever makes you happy”, my heart sank because I knew what I was telling her was a lie. I was looking at my daughter, at all the hope and potential that she had, juxtaposed with the terrible social, political and economic conditions of this planet and I feared for her future.

She was 10 years old.

I teach high school seniors who are four months away from graduation and I am sending them out into a country that is no longer even pretending to be a democracy. I write them recommendations, they receive their college acceptance letters, but I fear for their futures. In my government class I teach them from their textbooks about the magnificence of the Constitution, the separation of powers and the system of checks and balances. We study civil rights and pivotal Supreme Court cases, but in reality I might as well be teaching them fiction.

How can we continue to pretend that this nation is guided by the rule of law when corrupt politicians lie with impunity?

Everyday we watch, as oil companies deny climate change, banks laugh off regulations, laws are passed to criminalize freedom of speech, immigrant families are treated as less than human, and our rights are wiped off the face of the earth. Both major political parties are two sides of the same corporate coin, and the mainstream media is controlled by the same money as the politicians. We the People are marching in the streets--protesting while the police are militarized and the citizens of this country are criminalized. The very same politicians--who are, in fact, employees of The People--run from town hall meetings, and call us out of line for wanting to save our nation.

Schools are supposed to be safe places for our children.

Yet hate filled bigots deride teachers for trying to keep them that way. Racism has always been the ugliest part of this country’s history, but it is now openly celebrated by supporters of this presidential administration. Compassion and intelligence is considered to many as weakness, and facts are far outweighed by loud mouthed ignorance. Cable talk is designed to obfuscate the grand embezzlement of our hopes and dreams. Our billionaire Secretary of Education begrudges poor children of free lunch, our Congress seeks to take away their health care, our Attorney General wants to send them as slaves into the for-profit prison system, a white supremacist in the oval office wants to ban muslims, and this current president is waging a war against facts. Yet I tell my students to stand every morning for the Pledge of Allegiance.

This is the world in which our children must live.

There is one ultimate driving force in any parent’s life, and that is to protect their children. We parents, who are also teachers bring that same protective instinct into our classrooms. We are in loco parentis when they enter our school buildings, and I speak for many of my colleagues who would, without question’ sacrifice their lives to protect every child in their care.

Yet, our government wants to turn them into cannon fodder for their next manufactured war. They are still, until this day, judged on the color of their skin rather than the content of their character.

Knowing all of this, how can we, as teachers look our kids in the face? We, as teachers, must fight to make this a better world for, our students, no matter the cost. By any means necessary. We will defend our children with our lives, and we will take down every sell-out politician, and every low-life billionaire to do so.

We must stop arguing about our differences and unite around our one common goal, our children.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

One NJ Teacher's Response to DeVos' Criticism That We Are Brainwashing Children

Dear former students, 

I would like to take this time to formally apologize for brainwashing all of you. I apologize for the teaching of Walt Whitman who said to "filter" from all what you have learned; I apologize for teaching Thoreau who believed in the majority of one; I apologize for Emerson and his belief in the interconnectedness of all life; I apologize for Ben Franklin and fellow skeptics. 

I apologize for the viewpoints of many women, Edith Wharton, Kate Chopin, Emily Dickinson, Alice Walker. I apologize for understanding the plights of African Americans in such plays as Fences and Raisin in the Sun; for reading Cicero, Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Plato, Jefferson, and Paine - writers who dared to question authority. For this, I'm truly sorry. 

I apologize for allowing such works as The Great Gatsby to question the hallowed state of The American Dream. I apologize for teaching the true story of Pocahontas. I apologize for Hemingway's bottle, Faulkner's Emily, and Path's suicide. 

I apologize for assigning the essays and the poems and the stories and the recitals. I also want to apologize to my journalism students who sought out facts and the truth and the stories of the marginalized and voiceless while all the while winning awards and acting as the 4th Estate. What an idiot, I have been! 

I truly did not know what I was doing. Perhaps the new Education Secretary can provide for me a suitable curriculum. She can provide a can, and I can open the can to feed those poor in spirit. Until then, I'll ponder, in the words of Cicero, "Quo usque tandem aubutere, DeVos, patientia nostra?" I hope all of you can forgive my trespasses and moral lapse of judgment. 

Sincerely regretful, 

Walter Thomas Bowne

My Students Pay Every Day for Their “Free” Lunch By: Melissa Marini Svigelj-Smith

Originally posted at: https://msvigeljsmith.wordpress.com/2017/02/25/my-students-pay-every-day-for-their-free-lunch/   

When Billionaire Betsy Devos, the woman who bought the Secretary of Education position in Donald Trump’s administration, addressed attendees at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Thursday, she received a lot of criticism from people who actually care about children for a remark she made in which she claimed to be the first person to tell Bernie Sanders “to his face that there’s no such thing as a free lunch.” Although her comment was meant to be humorous, those of us who possess an ounce of humanity know that there is nothing funny about children living in poverty. However, this may be the one and only time that I can actually agree with the literal words of Betsy Devos. There is no such thing as a free lunch. In fact, my kids pay every day.
      According to a 2016 report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, 1 in 4 kids in Ohio, about 600,000 children, are living in poverty.  In the city that I teach in, Cleveland, 53.2% of children are living in poverty. Our children absolutely pay every single day of their lives for the meager opportunity to have a “free lunch.” They may not be paying with the currency that Betsy DeVos and her wealthy cronies value, but they are paying in many other ways that matter so much more. Below are just a few examples from the American Psychological Association:
Effects of child poverty
  • Poverty is linked with negative conditions such as substandard housing, homelessness, inadequate nutrition and food insecurity, inadequate child care, lack of access to health care, unsafe neighborhoods, and under-resourced schools which adversely impact our nation’s children.
  • Poorer children and teens are also at greater risk for several negative outcomes such as poor academic achievement, school dropout, abuse and neglect, behavioral and socioemotional problems, physical health problems, and developmental delays.
  • Economists estimate that child poverty costs an estimated $500 billion a year to the U.S. economy; reduces productivity and economic output by 1.3 percent of GDP; raises crime and increases health expenditure (Holzer et al., 2008).
Poverty and academic achievement
  • Chronic stress associated with living in poverty has been shown to adversely affect children’s concentration and memory which may impact their ability to learn.
  • The academic achievement gap for poorer youth is particularly pronounced for low-income African American and Hispanic children compared with their more affluent White peers.
Poverty and psychosocial outcomes
  • Children living in poverty are at greater risk of behavioral and emotional problems.
  • Unsafe neighborhoods may expose low-income children to violence which can cause a number of psychosocial difficulties. Violence exposure can also predict future violent behavior in youth which places them at greater risk of injury and mortality and entry into the juvenile justice system.
Poverty and physical health
Children and teens living in poorer communities are at increased risk for a wide range of physical health problems:
  • Low birth weight
  • Poor nutrition which is manifested in the following ways:
    1. Inadequate food which can lead to food insecurity/hunger
    2. Lack of access to healthy foods and areas for play or sports which can lead to childhood overweight or obesity
  • Chronic conditions such as asthma, anemia and pneumonia
  • Risky behaviors such as smoking or engaging in early sexual activity
  • Exposure to environmental contaminants, e.g., lead paint and toxic waste dumps
  • Exposure to violence in their communities which can lead to trauma, injury, disability and mortality

    As I was leaving a wake this morning for a teen I knew who was killed while at a playground in Cleveland, the price that my students pay because of poverty weighs heavily on me. There are no free lunches. My kids might get some free food at the schools they attend, but no one can tell me that they aren’t paying.

Without Progressive Opposition, Trump Will Win in 2020 and Beyond by Steven Singer

“You maniacs! You Finally did it! Oh damn you all to Hell!”
This was Charlton Heston at the end of “Planet of the Apes.”
But it could just as easily have been progressives everywhere after the Democratic National Committee voted for corporate shill Tom Perez to lead the party over bonafide change agent Keith Ellison.
What the Hell is wrong with you, DNC?
Don’t you get it? We lost against a reality show TV clown, Donald Trump, and you’re just repeating the same mistakes!?
And don’t give me this Russia hacking crap. Yes, they probably helped Trump win by exposing DNC emails. But they were real DNC emails. Democratic operatives actually wrote that stuff.
You will never convince me that it was enough to turn the election. If we had had an actual progressive running (Cough! Cough! Bernie Sanders!) it wouldn’t have mattered.
This was a choice between a corporate candidate and Donald Trump and people chose Donald. F’ing. Trump!
That’s on you.
And what is the first thing you do to fight back? You vote for another corporate Democrat to lead the party to oppose him!?
You maniacs! You Finally did it! Oh damn you all to Hell!
The Democratic Party is all but dead now.
Trump will walk into a second term in 2020 – no matter how terrible he continues to be between now and then.
He could take a dump on his desk in the oval office on live TV and there is probably NOTHING. We. Can. DO!
There is no opposition party.
This is not an opinion. It is a demonstrable fact. Just look back at freakin’ November!
Almost a million people signed a petition for Ellison. He won the backing of key unions – including the Teamsters, steelworkers, Communications Workers of America, and UNITE HERE. He won the backing of key activist groups including Democracy for America, 350.Org, the Center for Popular Democracy, MoveOn.Org, the Working Families Party, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, and others. He was supported by notable progressives like Senator Elizabeth Warren, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Zephyr Teachout, Gloria Steinem, Walter Mondale, and Dolores Huerta ( co-founder of the United Farm Workers). He won over left-leaning publications like The Nation, whose editorial board wrote, “It is Ellison who combines the ideals, skills, and movement connections that will revitalize the party.”
When it came down to the 447 party insiders actually eligible to vote, Perez won by 235 to 200 (not counting abstentions).
If the DNC were a child, I would praise them for making progress. But it’s not a child. It’s supposed to be a national political party that can put up a robust challenge to the neo-facist in the White House!
This is completely unacceptable. And party leaders know it.
That’s why Perez immediately made Ellison his co-chair.
Good try, but too little, too late.
Perez, not Ellison, will be in charge of key decisions about the future of the party. As party chairman, he holds the balance on the makeup of the DNC Unity Reform Commission.
Were you one of millions of Americans who thought the party’s use of superdelegates during the primary was undemocratic? Well this is the commission that can eliminate them.
Sanders and Clinton delegates at the DNC convention in Philadelphia this summer clashed over these issues until Clinton agreed to let the matter be decided later by creating this group. It was a way to avoid a floor debate at that time and unify the party.
Clinton’s team gets to name nine members of the commission, and Sanders’ team gets seven. Now, Perez, as DNC chair, will control three additional votes. For those of you counting at home, that’s a 12-7 majority on the commission for the corporate Democrats. So superdelegates won’t be going anywhere. So if you want a Democratic party that is more democratic and more responsive to rank-and-file Democrats, well you can just stuff it.
Of course, all that’s in the future. How can we know now that Perez and other Democratic leaders won’t commit themselves to reform anyway?
Because of how else they voted at yesterday’s convention in Atlanta.
Before voting for Perez, they actually decided to vote down a resolution that would have reinstated former President Barack Obama’s ban on corporate political action committee donations to the party.
Resolution 33 also would have forbidden “registered, federal corporate lobbyists” from serving as “DNC chair-appointed, at-large members.”
And the DNC said, “Nah. We want that corporate money.”
Just what we need. More corporate donors, more support from big business and the rich – less impact from the working class people the Democrats actually need to vote for them to take back the country!
The Democrats need new blood. The party needs a top-to-bottom reorganization. It needs young people, working class people and minorities. It needs to rebuild county organizations and follow Sander’s $27 average donations.
Consolidating power among corporate donors and refusing to make any real structural reforms is not going to accomplish any of it.
Why did Ellison lose? Short answer: Israel.
Ellison is an African American Muslim who has been a vocal critic of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians and continued expansion into disputed territories. His position is well within the party mainstream – even for many Jewish members. More than 60 percent of Democrats agree Israel should stop expanding in the West Bank or else face sanctions. Sanders – a Jew, himself – holds similar views.
However, prominent Clinton supporters spearheaded a smear campaign to deflate Ellison’s candidacy. His most vocal critics were the Anti-Defamation League, mega-donor Haim Saban, and lawyer Alan Dershowitz.
So instead the DNC has picked Perez, Obama’s former Labor Secretary who did next to nothing to help labor.
He famously sent an email to Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta published by Wikileaks suggesting Clinton paint her rival as an angry white male candidate with little minority support.
He wrote:
“Emmy and the team have a good plan to attract all minority voters. When we do well there [Nevada], then the narrative changes from Bernie kicks ass among young voters to Bernie does well only among young white liberals—that is a different story and a perfect lead in to South Carolina, where once again, we can work to attract young voters of color. So I think Nevada is a real opportunity, and I would strongly urge HRC to get out there within a couple days of [New Hampshire].”
Like others Clinton staffers, he described Nevada as her “firewall” and was unconcerned about how minorities would feel if they were described in such exploitative terms.
The Nevada caucus was the only decisive victory for Clinton with African Americans, according to entrance polls. However, more Latinos voted for Sanders so the state did not make it abundantly clear that Sanders was incapable of attracting support from people of color.
Despite smears by the Clinton campaign, there was never evidence Sanders supporters were motivated by white male angst. In fact, American National Elections Studies found white identity was more important to Clinton supporters than Sanders supporters.
But Perez’s loyalty to Clinton and other corporate Democrats has paid off.
Trump immediately responded with a tweet literally thanking the Democrats for choosing Perez and increasing his own chances of re-election.
Repeating the same failing strategy over-and-over is not the definition of political success. It is the definition of insanity.
Perhaps one day the Democrats will realize that and run actual progressives for leadership roles and higher office. But by then, it will be far too late.
Every day Trump further erodes our freedoms and social services. Every day he endangers our lives with his incompetence and undiplomatic relations with foreign governments. Every day he breaks our laws, spouts blatant lies and fosters hate and discord.
We simply don’t have the time for the Democrats to get their act together.
It is becoming even more clear that we need a completely new political party organized from the grassroots up and dedicated to progressivism. Whether this can be accomplished in the two years we have before the midterm elections seems doubtful. Whether it can be done in time to stop Trump’s re-election is unknown.
But waiting for the Democrats to get their collective heads out of their asses is an exercise in futility.
The cavalry is not coming. We must all learn to ride.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Bought With Love, Care, and Concern
Marla Kilfoyle, Executive Director The Badass Teachers Association

When Betsy DeVos became the U.S. Secretary of Education, her first social media interaction was to joke that she could not find the pencils.

Had DeVos ever visited a public school and spoken to public school teachers she would have understood that many teachers purchase items for their classrooms, including pencils.  I will invite you to tweet what you have purchased for your classroom to DeVos @BetsyDevosED #Pencils4Betsy or email her your list.

I have done blog entries highlighting how teachers go above and beyond before but it seems that not only do some folks need a refresher of what teachers spend on their children and classroom,  but Ms. DeVos needs to read this ENTIRE list.  She needs to understand that children, and teachers, deprived of materials, is NOT a joke.  She needs to know what teachers spend out of their pocket to make sure that children have their basic needs met so that they can learn and function.

What is most disheartening is that I have seen on various social media sites people posting that teachers need to “stop whining” about what they are purchasing for children.  Teachers need to  “stop bragging” about what they are purchasing for children.  Teachers need to “stop trying to come off as a hero” for what they are purchasing for children.    We are not whining, we are not bragging, and we don’t need to be heroes.  What we need people to understand is that the children in this country are suffering and starving.

Teachers are the first responders to this suffering and starving – we are NOT going to be quiet about that!

The following list was created from feedback on the Facebook page (the responses have not been edited) – The Badass Teachers Association.  To join the group you can go here https://www.facebook.com/groups/BadAssTeachers/

I buy binders, composition books, books, around $100

About $250.00 for basic start up supplies-weekly I can't even imagine. My grocery list looks like 20 people live in my house-crackers, cereal, fruit, anything on sale!

I buy shoes and coats as well as school supplies.

I haven't added my receipts from last year, but I've purchased: boxes of tissue, bottles of hand sanitizer, markers, pencils, pens, notebooks, lots of bags of chocolate, tuna salad snack packs (that come with crackers), microwavable mac n cheese boxes, coffee (I teach at an alternative h.s.), cookies, sweet bread, tortilla chips, orange juice, milk, napkins, forks, paper plates, and in the past, have paid for hair cuts, bus fare, a pair of pants and a pair of gym shoes...well over $100 per year. Imagine a politician having to pay for his/her own microphone!

This year I bought 90 spiral notebooks, 90 folders, treats for holiday parties, decorations for my room, hand sanitizer, tissues, not to mention buying activities from sites like teacher pay teacher to enhance instruction (we do not have a textbook). Total (this year) about $500...oh and the years only half over...

$100 pair of glasses for a boy whose mother couldn't afford them.

$10+ a week for food to supplement free/reduced meals--pretzels, peanut butter crackers, cereal, cheese sticks, yogurts,etc.,-- holiday craft items so they can make presents for family members-

-$200, school supplies--$200+ (folders, notebooks, paper, crayons, colored pencils, etc.), scholarships for field trips $200 per year, $500 for classroom incentives--prizes, games, stickers, reward certificates, etc. Alternative curricula items --interactive notebooks, activities, etc. $500 .

Besides many regular classroom supplies, I've replaced shoes that were worn completely through the soles, I've made sure that no child missed the end-of-year field trip due to cost, and I've replaced worn out binders and backpacks when needed.

Composition books, science project display materials, pens, pencils, paper and books. It has cost me between $1,000 and $2,000 per year.

A dress, strapless bra, jewelry, cardigan, and shoes for a student for our 8th grade luncheon. And, most of the normal stuff already stated. File folder boxes x 6, hanging folders, colored file folders, page protectors, name tags for drama assignment....

Oh yes, lunch for students during field trips, at least 2-3 kids per trip if we'd eat out. My total? Probably $500. My husband is a teacher too, his probably $500 as well.

Kid clothes, books, backpacks, lunch bags, composition notebooks, pencils, expo pens, sharpies, art supplies, staplers, and entrance to field trips.

$200 for socks, underwear, pants and shirts because the student had been absent because she didn't have clothes to wear because the mom threw the kids out and they were living with their dad in a friend's basement. $10 for toothbrush and toothpaste for a student who didn't have one.
Hats, mittens, snowpants in northern NY, $100+.

Tissues, highlighters, post-it notes, notebook paper, peppermints, pens = about $200

On top of everything else, I've bought $20 shoes for a student before, adding to my total of about $500/year.

I teach theatre so I spend money on productions because there is always more needed than the budget allows. That amounts to about $500 a year. I send care packages to former students at college and in the service. About $300 a year. Then probably $300 on other things from food to teaching materials. Total about $1200 a year.

5-subject notebooks @$7.00 each (usually 7/8 each year), scissors, glue sticks, tissues every 2 weeks, colored pencil, ink pens, more than $250.00 a year.

gift cards to Target, Value Village, etc. to help choir/band kids buy the necessary black pants and white shirts for concerts. And I don't teach band/choir - I'm their Teacher Librarian. Books - oh so many books - for my library because a budget of $4.25/student doesn't go very far. I keep a drawer full of granola bars/cup a noodles/soup/snacks to feed kids who need it (I have 950 students and a Free/Reduced lunch rate of about 81% so do the math). The usual pens/pencils/notepaper/spiral notebooks/3 ring binders for kids who need (I keep a shelf of stuff like this).

Satin waterbased varnish, 24 foam brushes, and high density foam for one advanced art project. $80. 

I usually spend about $500 a year.

Uniform clothes for middle school students, $30

In the past five years I have bought the usual... binders, composition notebooks, page protectors, sticky notes, pens, tape, paper clips, expo markers, cardstock, multiple printer cartridges, two printers... Ive probably spent over $200 in pencil sharpeners... I've paid for a child's prescriptions... 

I've also bought supplies for my kids that don't bring any, Clorox wipes, baggies for guided reading books, clothes, socks, shoes, food, backpacks, lunches, lice shampoo, coats, supplies for science projects, supplies for parent gifts at Christmas, deodorant, books, classroom furniture, at least 15 boxes of bandaids, ice packs for my freezer, snacks for random things like Dr. Seuss week, oh- a box of Valentines for a child who didn't have any to pass out... shall I go on?

I hate to think how much I have spent, but I do know it's been at least $500-$900 a year.

I have spent $10,000 over the last ten years on my classroom library.

Aside from the 100's spent on supplies for students, back packs, tooth paste and brushes, clothes, jackets, boots etc, I've paid for glasses, prescriptions, field trips. It is a never ending list, the very least of which is pencils.......

All types of supplies like pencils, spiral notebooks, crayons, glue sticks, at least 5 reams of 500 sheets of printer paper. Notebook paper, felt pens,  Plus many forgotten items like snacks etc.

I teach 1st grade and have a student who hasn't had power or much food in his house since early December. After I shared I had a student in need our faculty continues to contribute food and we work tirelessly to hook the family to resources.

We each help in our little corner of the world. over $300 and counting

1000+ pens, notebook paper, colored pencils, markers ($200), doughnuts and juice for breakfast on PSAT day about $50, lunch for my debate team $400 (4 lunch dates after competition) kleenex, hand sanitizer, lotion, soap for the faculty bathroom etc $100.

Tissues, markers, dry erase boards, post-its, computer cleaning supplies, broom and dustpan, dry erase board erasers, file folders, pencils, pens, crayons, colored pencils, masking tape, folders, copy paper, card stock, duct tape, egg timers, stress balls, fidgets, light bulbs, applesauce, granola bars, juice boxes, hand soap, books, bookmarks, legos, scissors, glue sticks, yarn, lunch bags, crepe paper, pocket charts, book repair tape, labels...

Books, books, books, books, art supplies, food, food, food, food, books, books, food, books, science materials, books, books, books, musical instruments, books, books, books

Copies of novels- 15 at about $7.00 each, too many boxes of Kleenex to mention, bookshelves for my classroom - one for $20, one for $35, paper, pencils, curriculum materials, etc.

4 journals at $1.00 each x 25 students = $100.00, pencils at $2.00 a box of 10 = $100.00, crayons, scissors, glue sticks, whiteboard markers, tissues, paper towels, copy paper $25.00 for a pack of 10. I use 4 packs minimum a month. Ink for the printer. Books for the students to take home. A minimum of ten books per student. These are books they keep. I have purchased clothing for students in need and back packs. Pencil cases, and erasers. Not to count flask cards and dominoes and dice plus borders and faceless paper and file folders and sheet protectors. Stickers and rewards plus certificates, name taps, desk top rulers. Plus so much more. Last year l had approximately $2,500 in school supplies that l spent so my students can be successful. Plus books, books, and more books for my classroom library that must be worth $10,000. Plus supplies for the classroom such a scotchtape, wide tape, staplers, staples, office supplies, index cards, construction paper, etc, k cannot walk out of a Dollar Tree under $50 in school supplies. Last year l even purchased a turkey for a family in need at the holidays. I had not realized how expensive turkeys were since l get mine with reward points. The turkey was over $40.

A Non-Bat middle school teacher friend of mine bought a homeless student $100.00 worth of clothes and shoes so the student would have more than 2 outfits to wear.

20 new Texas Instruments calculators $210.00; items for classroom store (PBS) wonder if she knows that one! @$400; science supplies which are not part of my ESE curriculum but has to be taught @$500. That's just this year! Plus your typical supplies-@$1,000 copy paper, pencils...
Pencils, science supplies, stickers, food...$200.

Paper, crayons, markers, color pencils, scissors, printer cartridges, sticky notes, index cards, staples, white boards, ear phones, multiple, expo markers, shoes, mittens, gloves, coats, pants, shirts, underwear. Snacks for daily snacks. Glue, glue sticks, laminate and laminator. Desk labels, posters, books. Printer paper. I am sure a spend over $500.00 a year. I am sure this is on the low side.

Pencil sharpeners, staplers, staples, glue sticks, tape, folders, printer paper, printer ink, construction paper, pencils, stickers, markers, crayons, pens, notebooks, binders. Potting soil, paper cups and seeds so they could grow plants and write about them during plant unit. Bulletin board paper and border for bulletin boards, posters. Plastic organizers for school supplies. Index cards, post-it notes. Snacks and drinks for holiday parties. Books for the classroom library. Dry erase markers, and individual whiteboards. Tissues, hand sanitizer, hand lotion, wipes for cleaning the desktops. At least $400/year.
Granola bars, fruit, money for gas, books for reading assignments, tissues, post-it notes, field trip $, lunch money...@$300/year.

I used to buy socks

Glue, markers, underwear, Kleenex, snacks, pencils, folders, laminate and laminator, potty seat, fidgets, disinfectant wipes, hand sanitizer, glue sticks, hot glue gun, play dough, books, apps, construction paper, card stock, stickers, posters, puppets, games, manipulatives, crayons...
Books books books art supplies & resources tissues hand wipes soap lotion ( their skin gets dry from clay!) coats hats shoes gift certificates snacks and love (which is free & unconditional).
Tissues, hand sanitizer, hearing aid batteries (I work with students with hearing loss), stickers, markers, crayons, dry erase boards, index cards to create flash cards...at least $500/year
For my high school math class: the usual - Pencils, pens, colored pencils, graph paper, loose leaf, binders, paper for the printer, books to supplement the curriculum, dice, Barbie dolls (for bungee jumping), playing cards, rubber bands, rulers, sharpies, granola bars, kleenex, sweatshirts, clothes, and college tution to be able to take my college class in high school: lowball price: $3000. Reward - priceless

meals, co-signed for a car loan, down payment for an attorney so she could fight to keep her kid, scholarship $ monthly, $ to start a non-profit, diapers, books, Xmas gifts for their kids, driving lessons... What's a salary for?

I buy clothes, coats, daily snacks (Morning and afternoon,) paper, pencils, markers, crayons, and a ton of stuff from teachers’ pay teachers.... because I have no curriculum.

Though I am retired, at the beginning of the school year, from purchased made over the summer vacation, bought pencil cases, sharpeners, erasers, pencils, pens, comp notebooks and a doodle pad Cost: ~$100+ and it was my pleasure to do this 🙂

Cleaning supplies, such as clorox wipes and 409. Nobody but me cleans computer headsets that are used every hour. My teaching materials are old and out of date. I have purchased magazines and new reading materials out of my own pocket. I also pay for pencils, paper, binders, band aids...

Paper, notebooks, binders, markers, crayons, pencils, pens, curriculum materials, library books, computer programs, speakers, toner, fabric, craft supplies, glue, paint, snacks, lunches, and that's what I can come up with at this time of nite..... cost (more than I will admit to my husband!) ..... at least $500.....

School supplies - pencils, crayons, paper, folders, etc. Food. Underwear. Socks. Books. Backpacks. 

Hats. Scarves. Coats. Toothbrushes. Science equipment and supplies. My teaching partner of 15 years used to deliver donated turkeys to families at their homes. When they need it, we get it for them.
Even in higher ed---many of us keep snacks and supplies on hand for our college students who need help getting through to payday or just a hard time.

Cereal and granola bars, shirts, sweatshirts, PE clothes, field trip expenses, folders, binders, notebooks, pens, pencils, calculators, art supplies, feminine hygiene products, snacks and incentives, dance admission, science lab supplies, apps for the iPads, computer software and subscriptions, lunches, cleaning supplies, printer ink and toner, laminating pockets, novels, headphones, USB chargers, index cards, hair bands, bobby pins, safety pins, Band-aids, sharpener, photocopies, flash drives, games, sports equipment, CD player. I probably spend $1500-$2000 each year.

n books, pencils, dry erase markers, notebook paper, printer paper, markers, highlighters, ear buds, erasers, snacks, computer apps/software, pencil sharpeners, pencil lead, classroom incentive items, movies, craft supplies, bike helmets, shoelaces, clothes, books.

For art class, pencils, plaster, ceramic glazes, brush holders, brushes, sculpture materials, tape, computer printer and ink cartridges, snacks, breakfast foods, colored pencils

Specialized paper, pencils, different types of adaptive scissors, specialized feeding dishes and utensils, sensory toys, fine motor and visual perceptual practice books and games, clothing. I probably spend $250-$300 per year (I'm an OT in special education).

My husband is a HS science teacher. He buys pens, pencils, colored pencils, lab materials, paper, paper clips, staplers and staples, scissors, glue sticks, and various other office supplies, also totaling about $250-$300.

There's no way I could keep up with everything I've bought- especially over the years.

The biggest purchase was probably a desk for my classroom, though. And I also built shelves for my books and supplies, and largest cubbies to go into my closets. 

Mostly art supplies and expo markers. Usually I spend about 300 each year

Antibacterial wipes, dry erase markers, small individual whiteboards and erasers, all the typical office supplies, healthy snacks in case someone didn't get breakfast or needed to take meds with something to eat, bookcases, paper shredder-I was a sped teacher and shredded paper a lot, a mold test kit one year, posters, bandaids, safety pins, needles and thread, screwdriver for eyeglasses, some playground equipment, special paper, adaptive scissors, binders, teachers' guides in some cases so I could help with homework for the classes I didn't coteach, Kleenex, extra hats, gloves, mittens, hoodies, novels for classroom library, and yes, pencils. I know there's more.

Tissue, folders, notebooks, markers, crayons, glue, colored pencils, paper, headphones, bulletin board supplies, pens, pencils, birthday stickers & book coupons, post-its, treats for celebrations, games, laminating film, books, white board markers & erasers, colored printer ink, labels, student store stuff (shopkins, Pokémon, journals, bracelets, monster feet, etc.), manipulatives, fabric for my crate seats, pizza lunches, and more I'm sure! At least $600 easy!!!

I teach PreK students with hearing loss. Over the years I have purchased: a TTY to communicate with deaf parents (back in the day!), winter coats, snowpants, boots, mittens, gloves, hats, gym shoes, spare clothes, underwear, socks, bathing suits, swim diapers, toothbrushes/toothpaste, denture floss to clean hearing aid earmolds, batteries, healthy snacks for students, juice, notebooks, cardstock, pens, big pencils for the kids, post-its, tape dispensers, staplers, three hole punch, copy paper, ink for printer, pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue, diapers/pull-ups, wet wipes, hand sanitizer, lotion, fleece pullovers to wear when it is too cold in the room, fleece blankets for naptime, numerous DVDs for indoor recess, toys, doll house, furniture for doll house, dolls for doll house, play food for kitchen area, community helper costumes, costumes for Nursery Rhyme music program, playdoh, wooden puzzles, floor puzzles, train set with tracks, an LA traffic jam of cars, trucks and other vehicles, supplementary reference materials and hands-on manipulatives for thematic units, food for cooking experiences in the classroom, treats for classroom parties, food to support lessons, storage containers, BOOKS! BOOKS! BOOKS!

This is not a complete list. My best guess, low-end rough estimate, over the past 25 years: $30K+
Every penny spent with love and the goal of helping students.

Tissue, tissue, tissue. Also curricular materials, pencil sharpeners, bandaids, whiteboards, markers, and erasers, snacks, classroom rewards, birthday cards, writers' workshop materials, and my own space heater. Volunteers whom I recruited on my own, gave notebooks, folders, paper, binders, markers, pencils, erasers, pens, lead, crayons, jump drives, staples, tape, Post Its, glue, tacks, paper clips, binder clips, and even my office chair.

When orchestra kids go to contest, everybody in black socks are a thing and points are deducted. It is silly, but it is a thing, so I have bought black socks in bulk so my students' hard work is rewarded and not hindered by his socks.

Classroom materials, supplemental materials, tissues, folders notebooks, markers, pencils, pens, paper, rewards/ treats, granola bars, Lunch once a month of pizza or dollar menu items for the tables that succeed, fastfood giftcards on occasion, Christmas gifts, books, thrift store uniform clothing, coats, gloves, hats and back packs. Poster/trifold boards, classroom subscriptions to different magazines and apps. that is a good start but that is only part of it I'm sure if I had more time to think about it.

Pencils, erasers, folders, notebooks, cards, rewards, crackers, graham crackers, jelly, PB, tissues, paper, stickers, stuffed animals for writers' workshop, books, more books, hats and mittens, . all adds up to about $1000 a year.

Over the years:. Backpacks, clothes, coats, sneakers, food, batteries for calculators and hearing aids, baby clothes (teen mom), soap, detergent, and deodorant, cab fare for emergencies , care package for a hospitalized student, pens, paperclips, staples, printer cartridges, sharpies, dictionaries, binders, index cards, glue sticks, fidgets, hand sanitizer, tissues, dry erase markers, paper, thesauruses, other books, pencils, sharpeners, lesson plans, etc. This year, at least $500. And the year is only half over.
Our school's art and literary magazine had been reduced to a black and white photocopied hand out. A group of students wanted to revive it to be like other magazines of more affluent schools. They asked me to sponsor, and for three years we produced a 32 page full color Art and Literary Magazine that received Excellent and Superior ratings at the state level. One year we expanded to include an original music cd of student music in the back of the book. I donated my full teacher stipend each year to supplement our fundraising for the book production.

art supplies including materials for the room that would allow kids to have water containers, paper towels, and all the cleaning supplies for the desks. Books for curriculum development.
books, books, books! scissors, markers, tape, folders, paper, subscription to Tumbleweed, various curriculum enhancers (such as for HG series), food, chapstick, PENCILS!, bookmarks and posters from ALA, decorative stuff for walls.... at least 1000.00 bucks a year..... (remember that heart- wrenching commercial where the husband is mad at the wife for buying stuff for her classroom, then she looks over and he is in another line buying supplies for her?) ....sigh.....

My colleagues and I have paid for things ranging from lunches to field trips. In a couple of cases these field trips included a 4 day trip to Washington, DC.

snacks, notebooks, folders, markers, crayons, paper plates, art supplies (since Kindergarten doesn't get art class), books and CDs for my listening center....a couple hundred dollars

Books, notebooks, books, pens, books, paper, books, snacks, books, suckers, poster board, markers, , other school supplies, and books. About $1000-$1200 a year.

Today, a power strip to charge their iPads in Pre-k, $15.

I spent an average of $1200 per year on folders, pencils, sharpeners, office supplies, BOOKS, posters, subscriptions to sites with materials to use in my curriculum, fans (no ac), hats, scarves, etc. Food!
$10 per week on cereal and snacks

Back to school supplies $200. Clothing for students who need clothes and coats $200. Gifts for their families from the holiday shop $100. Donation to Santa fund for needy kids $100. Kleenex paper towel Purell cleaning products for the year $100. Yearbooks books from book fair etc $100+. Trips /field trips. $$$. Shall I keep going? The money we earn is a God given gift and we in turn help others less fortunate.

Notebooks so far this year, and food

In my kindergarten world - school lunches $2.45 each time, several times a week, backpacks - $15 - 25, fines for lost library books, field trip money, buy our class t-shirt, extra clothing to keep on hand when needed, coats, shoes, curriculum to differentiate

Notebooks, folders, pencils, pencil pouches, paperback books, colored pencils, crayons, snacks. $500 

Flowers, worms, lobsters, mussels, clams, fish and fish foods and equipment for the fish tank, mice and the stuff they need to stay alive, mushrooms, seeds, potting soil, peat, pizza, chocolate, marshmallows, Graham crackers, borax, Elmers Glue, lichens, elodea... That's just some of the lab supplies each year!