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With federal financial belts tightening, state budgets bursting, and local governments left with less and less, it’s no surprise that education and children are last in line. As a staunch advocate for children, the daughter of a 45-year-careered teacher and a mom who wants her children to have everything, I am ever vigilant and a boisterous critic when our society fails to put the best interests of our children first.But when I received my children’s school supply list this year, I had to do a double take. Maybe it’s because my household budget is tightening, right along side of governmental ones. Or maybe – dare I say it – school supply lists are a little, well, excessive.

My kindergartner’s list was comprised of 15 different items including such products as band aids, Lysol Spray, Lysol Wipes and Play Doh. My 5th grader’s list was short and sweet, with only 4 different items (though while placing the 72-pack of pencils in her backpack, I wondered, “what will the class do with 1,656 number 2 pencils for the year?”)

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