What to get and where to get it.

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LAS CRUCES – The start of the school year is upon us in the county of Doña Ana.

Hatch Valley Public Schools and the Gadsden Independent School District both resume classes on August 2. Classes in Las Cruces public schools begin on August 9 and will gradually enter kindergarten on August 10.

Here’s how to prepare with the supplies needed for the 2021-22 school year.

Where to get free supplies

There are several campaigns and fundraisers for school supplies in the county to come.

The Literacy and Resource Fair will be held at Hatch Valley High School from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday, July 30 and from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, July 31.

The drive will distribute books and backpacks filled with supplies to students.

The fair will also contain information on colleges, employment and child care.

Families and Youth Inc., will be holding its fifth annual Back 2 School Backpack Contest from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, July 31 at the Las Cruces Convention Center, 680 University Ave.

In addition to a backpack full of supplies, students can also get vaccinated at school, play games, and get free lunch (ages 1-18). Children must be present. Masks are encouraged.

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Walmart will be hosting its “Here We Go” events in select stores where families will receive free school sample bags to fill.

In Las Cruces, events will be held from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday August 1 at the Walmarts at 571 Walton Boulevard and 3331 Rinconada Boulevard.

Representatives from General Mills will be on hand at Walmart stores to help families enroll in the Box Tops for Education program, which earns rewards for local schools.

Statewide, the LIBRE Institute will host a backpacking competition in five New Mexico cities: Albuquerque, Española, Roswell, Farmington, and Las Cruces. The institute aims to distribute thousands of backpacks in cities.

The Las Cruces contest will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, August 7 at the Monte Vista Center, 2215 S. Main St.

A press release said the LIBRE Institute giveaway is intended to enable families to seek the best educational opportunities for their child, as well as to offset some of the growing back-to-school costs for families.

Emilia Hutchison shows off her new unicorn backpack at her bus stop while waiting for the bus on the first day of in-person school in Las Cruces on Tuesday April 6, 2021.

Purchase and donation of supplies

Next weekend is the annual New Mexico Gross Revenue Tax Holiday, a great time to stock up on school supplies. The state suspends the collection of gross revenue tax on sales of qualifying items so that you can purchase the items tax-free.

School supplies intended for use in standard general education classrooms must cost less than $ 30 per unit to be tax-exempt.

The tax holiday begins at 12:01 am on August 6 and ends at midnight on August 8.

A list of eligible items in New Mexico is available at https://bit.ly/3rERJ7c.

For those looking to donate to help students stock up on supplies, local Las Cruces-owned radio stations will be holding their annual “Stuff the Bus” radiothon live for Las Cruces public schools on Friday, July 30.

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The initiative asks community members to drop off pencils, paper, pencils, hand sanitizer and other supplies for teachers and students at Mesilla Valley Mall. Monetary donations can also be made through the Las Cruces Public Schools Foundation.

The Radiothon will be broadcast live at the Mesilla Valley Mall on 101 Gold, Zia Country 99.5, Magic 104.9, La Equis 96.7 and AM 1450 KOBE New Talk 96.7 FM.

What will the students need?

The LCPS posted its supply lists earlier this month on its social media pages.


  • 10 # 2 pencils
  • 3 broad-line composition notebooks
  • 1 box of 8 pencils
  • 2 glue sticks
  • 1 pair of child-safe scissors
  • 1 box of tissues
  • 1 reusable water bottle
  • 1 backpack (LCPS provided during registration, contact the school for questions)

Primary school – grades 1 to 5

  • 24 pencils # 2
  • 1 pencil box
  • 2 glue sticks
  • 1 box of 24 pencils
  • 1 box of colored pencils (third to fifth grade only)
  • 1 box of 8 washable markers (from third to fifth year only)
  • 1 highlighter (third to fifth year only)
  • 1 pair of child-safe scissors
  • 4 folders with pockets and three punched holes
  • 1 packet of ruled broad-line paper
  • 4 composition notebooks with wide lines
  • 1 backpack
  • 1 box of tissues
  • 1 reusable water bottle

College – sixth to eighth grade

  • 1 binder with three rings of 2 inches
  • 6 dividers with tabs
  • 3 pocket shirts with clasps
  • 1 packet of lined paper
  • 24 pencils # 2
  • 1 pack of blue or black pens
  • 3 composition notebooks
  • 1 composition book with squared paper
  • 1 box of 12 colored pencils
  • 1 combination lock for PE
  • 1 highlighter
  • 1 USB stick (2-4 gigabytes)
  • 1 backpack
  • 1 reusable water bottle
  • 1 box of tissues

High School – Grades 9 to 12

  • 12 blue or black pens
  • 12 # 2 pencils with erasers (mechanical or standard)
  • 2 highlighters
  • 2 packets of collegiate rule paper
  • 3 spiral notebooks with dividers
  • 1 reusable water bottle
  • 1 backpack

If you have any questions about student needs, contact local schools or teachers directly for details.

Miranda Cyr, a member of the Report for America Corps, can be reached at mcyr@lcsun-news.com or @mirandabcyr on Twitter. Show your support for the Report for America program at https://bit.ly/LCSNRFA.

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