Purchasing Trends of Teachers Revealed in New Report from Quality Education Data

Purchasing Authority: A Companion to Teacher Buyer Behavior, 2008-2009 Shows Teacher Preferences for Buying Teacher Supplies, Supplemental Materials and Professional Development

Denver, CO (March 11, 2008) — Teachers are the primary decision makers for purchasing supplemental materials, classroom supplies, and professional development resources in American schools, reports a new study from Quality Education Data, Inc. (QED), a leading education market research and database firm, and a wholly owned subsidiary of Scholastic. QED researches teacher purchasing trends each year to collect the most current data on teacher spending in American schools.

Purchasing Authority: A Companion to Teacher Buyer Behavior, 2008-2009, asked educators about their research and purchasing activities when buying materials for their classrooms. The study also asked teachers to report their use of retail stores, teacher stores, print catalogs and online stores for purchase of classroom supplies and materials.

Key findings include:

  • The majority of teachers are turning to their peers for purchasing advice on professional development materials (71%), supplemental materials (57%), and classroom supplies (58%).
  • Half of all respondents report using the Internet as sources of information for supplemental materials and teacher supplies.
  • Teachers with 1-5 (78%) and 6-15 (68%) years of experiences are significantly more likely to rely on the web when searching for supplemental materials compared to teachers with more than 16 years experience (42%).
  • Of those teachers shopping online, a larger percentage are using Scholastic to purchase materials in all categories: supplemental materials (47%), classroom supplies (49%), and professional development (40%).
  • Teachers shopping at teacher supply stores are more likely to purchase from Lakeshore Learning Materials in all categories: supplemental materials (30%), classroom supplies (35%), and professional development resources (30%).
  • A majority of teachers reported they turn to Wal-Mart when making retail purchases for their supplemental materials (62%) and classroom supplies (68%). Teachers are more likely to use Target to purchase professional development materials.

“The findings from the new Teacher Buyer Behavior report underscore teachers’ deep commitment to making the best choices in educating children. Teachers of all grades continue to invest a great deal of their own money each year to buy much needed supplies and materials for their classrooms and students and this report makes it possible for the education industry to address the changing needs of teachers.” said Andy Lacy, President, QED.

This study was conducted by using Quality Education Data’s Online Educator Panel. A random sample of invitations to participate in the survey was sent to panel members. Of those, 1,184 panel members responded to the invitation, with 757 respondents qualifying and participating by the study deadline. Data collection took place October 16-24, 2007.

About QED
Established in 1981 and headquartered in Denver, Colorado, QED® is a leading provider of marketing services for K-12 and higher education businesses. QED provides comprehensive mailing lists, data analytics, market research, and creative services solely for the education market. QED Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Scholastic Inc., the global children's publishing, education and media company. QED's National Education Database™ provides comprehensive access to U.S. and Canadian educational institutions and is the core data resource that supports all QED products and services, including custom education market research, database design and annual research reports tracking critical educational trends. QED publishes the National Registry of Teachers by Names, a database of over 4.3 million educators by name, telephone-verified at the school building level. The Company also publishes The Heller Reports news publications and produces the annual EdNET conference to help education marketers stay current on market trends.

About Scholastic
Scholastic Corporation (NASDAQ: SCHL) is the world’s largest publisher and distributor of children’s books and a leader in educational technology and children’s media. Scholastic creates quality educational and entertaining materials and products for use in school and at home, including children's books, magazines, technology-based products, teacher materials, television programming, film, videos and toys. The Company distributes its products and services through a variety of channels, including proprietary school-based book clubs and school-based book fairs, retail stores, schools, libraries, television networks and the Company’s Internet Site, www.scholastic.com.

Please visit www.qeddata.com for more information about the 2008 report on Teacher Purchasing Trends.

Kyle Good