Over the last couple of years, major retailers have increasingly offered discounts to teachers during the back-to-school season. Now some retailers and brands are extending their promotions even further.

Regional grocer and general merchandise retailer Meijer announced that it will extend its back-to-school promotion for teachers through the entire 2021 – 2022 school year, according to a press release. The promotion consists of a 15 percent discount on classroom essentials.

In extending the program, Meijer means to help out teachers facing uncertainty brought about by the pandemic. It comes as a survey from AdoptAClassroom.org reveals that teachers spent more than ever before last school year. Surveyed teachers reported spending an average $750 of their own money yearly on supplies, and 95 percent do not anticipate this year’s budget being enough to cover their costs.

In July, Meijer added furniture, such as desks, cleaning supplies and kids’ apparel to the classroom essentials already eligible for the 15 percent discount.

The usual end date of the Meijer teacher discount is December 31, according to Cleveland.com.

Meijer is not the only retailer that has extended education-centered promotions beyond the weeks leading up to the start of the school year.

Apple, in addition to its seasonal back-to-school discounts, offers a special category of “educational discounts” which are available to school faculty, staff and home school teachers as well as returning students and parents of students, according to Business Insider.

Retailers such as Target, Office Depot, Staples and Dollar General also offered teacher discounts on some products this year, as USA Today reported. Those deals, however, ended either in the summer or in September. Kohl’s offered its first teacher discount this year, for three days in July.

The well-being of teachers has been more on the public radar since the onset of the pandemic. When schools reopened, concerns and anxieties arose about a potential increased risk of COVID-19 exposure due to contact with so many students throughout a given day.

Some U.S. states announced earlier in the year that they would be earmarking some federal stimulus money to give direct hazard pay bonuses to teachers, according to The U.S. Sun.


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