Texas teachers pay $298 million for school supplies

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Texas teachers combine to pay more out of pocket for school supplies than their counterparts in other states, according to a new report.

My eLearning World, a web portal for online learning, said in a report Monday that teachers in Texas are expected to spend a total of $298 million on school supplies like books, crayons, snacks and school decorations. 2022-23 school year, more than any other state. One factor in the total Texas figure is the number of teachers the state employs.

Texas, the nation’s second most populous state, even surpasses California, which is expected to see teachers spend a total of $240 million this school year.

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Based on the number of teachers employed in the 2021-22 academic year — 370,431, according to the Texas Tribune — teachers are expected to spend $804 on their individual classrooms, slightly below the projected national average of $820, according to My eLearning World report. However, an internal survey of teachers from the Texas State Teachers Association returned an average of $846.

According to a 2018 New York Times poll, 94% of teachers said they spend their own money on school supplies.

An individual teacher can only deduct $300 in class fees on their federal tax return, according to Monday’s report. Last year, teachers across the country spent an average of $750 on out-of-pocket expenses. The estimated average for 2022 is the highest on record, according to the My eLearning World report.

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The TSTA poll also showed that 70% of teachers surveyed said they were “seriously considering leaving the profession”, a record high. The figure was 53% when the last poll was taken in 2018.

“The continuing stress of the pandemic is one factor, but it is not the only one,” TSTA Chairman Ovidia Molina said in a statement. “Inadequate salaries, political attacks on educators, and the failure of state leaders to protect the health and safety of students and school employees have also combined to depress teacher morale to the lowest level. low level of recent memory and endanger our public school system.”

The average salary of teachers responding to the TSTA survey was $59,000, more than $7,000 less than the national average. According to TSTA, classroom expenses erode educators’ take home pay.

shepard.price@express-news.net | @shepardgprice

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