School supply lists expand

Created: 08/12/2014 9:43 PM
By: Erica Zucco, KOB Eyewitness News 4

As society gets more complex, so do schools – and students may need more tools to succeed. Because so many New Mexico school districts are strapped for cash, parents are being asked to pay for more.

After coaching cheerleading practice, Delilah Armijo had to head to the store.

“I have not finished buying all the tissue and cleaner that I'm supposed to buy - so I have to get that tonight,” Armijo said.

Her middle school student’s school supply list goes far beyond what she says schools used to ask for.

“I don't remember being in school and my mom having to buy tissue paper, reams of copy paper, disinfectant, things like that…I think that stuff was covered when we were young and it's something now falling on the parents,” Armijo said.

Looking through several dozen New Mexico school supply lists, KOB Eyewitness News 4 found schools asking families to foot the bill for headphones, copy paper, jump ropes and helmets for gym class, forks, Ziploc bags, books and soap.

Some parents say they understand buying extra pencils or paper to share with kids in class whose families can’t afford them.

“I'm more of the softhearted parent that kind of just like, there are some kids on there who need those school supplies so… I don't know, I'm iffy on it,” Marty Martine said.

It’s the supplies that don’t directly affect a child’s education that some parents question.

“I would rather spend the money on things he actually needs for himself to further his education - not to fund what APS is lacking,” Armijo said.

Some districts do help out families that can’t afford supplies altogether. Typically, families are instructed to call the school’s counselor.

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