According to a new survey, public school teachers nation-wide spend around $500 of their own money on classroom materials and supplies every year.
Charla Bergeron teaches Pre-K at Pietzsch-MacArthur Elementary School. In her four years as a teacher, Bergeron has spent around $2500 of her own money on class room supplies.
"There's a lot of children that don't come to school with school supplies. I always have 3-4 students that don't come to school with anything," says Bergeron.
A recent study by the National School Supply and Equipment Association shows on average teachers pay for 77% of supplies needed in their classroom.
In addition to the basics, teachers buy items for creative projects, items that aren't supplied by the school system.
Bergeron says she covers the cost of her classrooms craft supplies, "Yarn and paper plates. We use lots of paper plates and baggies. A lot of baggies." Her favorite thing to buy for her kids is markers.
Any extra funding comes from the school, parents and other school funds.
"The D.E.S.K. program is really good for that," says Bergeron.
With budget cuts in education across the state, Bergeron says she anticipates less funding.
The cuts won't make her shortchange her students; She'll still give them the tools they need to learn.
If you want to help teachers and their students with school supplies, many schools accept donations.