Question: Teacher's Classroom Supply Funds

Our PTO makes funds available for teacher's classroom supplies at the beginning of each year. We have always operated on a reimbursement system: they pay for the supplies, turn in the receipts and they we cut a check. Teachers are reimbursed within the same week, however a number of teachers have a difficult time paying for the supplies first. A few on the PTO Board would like to just cut them a check at the beginning of the year, meaning we would right the check directly to the teacher. They would still need to turn in receipts but it would be after they've spent these funds. I personally am not keen on this for many reasons but I am wondering if we can even do this legally. Can anyone help me with this? Thanks!

Asked by amyewillis



Advice from PTO Today

Rose H writes:
Hi Amyewillis,
You should check with your school district for information on what's legal. For example, in Massachusetts, the State Ethics Commission states: "A Parent-Teacher Organization wants to give $75 gift cards to teachers to buy classroom supplies. The teachers may accept the gift cards but must use them to buy classroom supplies, and should keep receipts to show that they did so. Supplies bought with the gift cards are the property of the school, not the teachers."

So,once you know what the case is in your region, do what works best for the teachers and your group.

Really want to add that a great way to help your school is to use, our sister site. It's a free website where you can upload teacher supply and wish lists and it's a much easier way for teachers and parents to access and use lists for classroom supplies all year long. Here's the link:

Good luck!

Community Advice

LauraJan1 writes:
Raise all the money you need to pay for classroom supplies with ShopForStudents dot com

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