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A newly introduced bill aims to alleviate the financial burden of purchasing school supplies for North Carolina’s teachers.

Many classroom essentials are not provided and are instead bought by teachers using their own money. According to the North Carolina Governor’s Office, the average teacher in the state spends over $500 each year on classroom supplies.

To address this issue, 13 state representatives, including three from Mecklenburg County, have proposed a bill that would allocate more than $82.3 million annually to the Department of Public Instruction for the purchase of classroom supplies for teachers throughout the state. While this would be a significant help if passed, teachers are still seeking alternative resources in the meantime.

One such resource is Classroom Connection, which provides free supplies for Charlotte-area teachers. However, the organization is unable to assist all educators, as free supplies are only available to teachers with over half of their students qualifying for free or reduced-price lunches.

It should be noted that the proposed school supplies bill is in the early stages and has yet to be passed. It is currently scheduled for discussion in the House on Thursday and, if ultimately approved, would take effect before the start of the next school year.

Read the full story here.