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Districts say it can be hard to monitor whether the donated materials align with standards and cite concerns that the process makes it difficult to track how money is distributed among schools. Some have also insinuated that teachers might be pocketing the money, even though only the materials are sent. Still, many districts encourage teachers to use such sites as a way to supplement school resources without having to dip into their own wallets.
''As with GoFundMe campaigns ..., the real scandal here is not that teachers are using DonorsChoose, but that relying on outside funding is logical because public schools are so perpetually underfunded.” —JOSEPH BOSELOVIC
“The district I teach at now requires a teacher to submit their request word for word what they will post on DonorsChoose to the board for approval. And we had to do a ‘training module’ on how we agreed to this new policy (there was never a discussion about this prior to the policy being adopted).” —TAMMI RAMSEY
“As a school board member, I would rather supply teachers with the tools they need than have them go out and do this. If the school budget cannot provide, then I see crowdsourcing as a good alternative but only after other avenues have been explored within the district.” —JANE BLYSTONE
“That [pocketing the money for themselves] is beyond ridiculous. Thanks for slapping the face of every public school teacher in the country. Apparently there is not enough to do at the district level other than think of ways teachers may be plotting their own gain.” —ELEMENTARY T.
“My guess is that the real concern is that administrators do not like advertising that they cannot adequately fund education. I have yet to see an administration ban teachers spending their own money on a classroom.” —LIZTEACHER
“Always been conflicted about these sites. So inappropriate that teachers are directed to these sites by admins who don’t provide basic supplies (i.e., printer ink, paper), and then gross inequities between what teachers have time/network to request (i.e., flexible seating).” —BETH BRADY
A version of this article appeared in the April 10, 2019 edition of Education Week as Teachers Riled By Ban on DonorsChoose