Last week, three weeks before the school year is to end*, the PTA sent out an email with a link to order school supplies for next year. Being the cussed disestablishmentarianist that I am, my first thought was "the hell with that, I'll buy the stuff myself". But I clicked through to see what was on the list, and found, to my enormous irritation, that the first grade supply lists were divided by gender - different lists for boys and girls.
There is one difference between the boxes: the boy's box has one box of 20 gallon sized zippered plastic bags, the girl's box has one box of 50 sandwich sized zippered plastic bags.**
But what thoroughly chaps my hide is that the girl supply list costs twenty cents more! What insidious form of discrimination is this? Isn't it bad enough that women earn less than men? Now it costs more to be a girl, too?
I can't imagine why they didn't split the difference, ten cents more to the boys, and ten cents less to the girls.
And in the end, I just bought the stuff - so I wouldn't have to think about it again - but not without leaving a comment about the pricing.
*Here in New York, school starts immediately after Labor Day and runs to the end of June. Anything else just seems weird to me.
**They're classroom supplies - it's not that boys need fewer bigger bags and girls need more smaller bags.