T2T began in 2012 as a concept developed by an elementary school teacher with over 37-years of classroom experience. LIke her 3.3 million collegues, she too had spent a hefty portion of her annual income purchasing classroom items. Over the years, her personal classroom inventory had taken about $30,000 out of her take home pay. Looking closely at her own inventory, our founder realized that much of the collection was unused due to such factors as changing grades taught, administrative assignments and other matters not related to the items' educational value or condition.
Leaving valuable unused items on storage shelves was no different to her than stashing $30,000 under a matress and not earning interest. What she envisioned was the ability to recover a portion of her initial investment by selling these unique products to other educators at prices substantially below retail. What was lacking was an efficient way to connect with a potential customer base of 3.3 million educators.
She realized a centralized marketplace would be an ideal way for teachers to connect in order to buy and sell gently-used classroom items. She also knew that there was a need for this exchange. Over the years she had attended several "classroom sales" hosted by retiring teachers. These events were however limited in time, opportunity and product variety. What she envisioned was a 24/7 marketplace open to everyone and teaming with variety.
This 24/7 marketplace for teachers to make and save money exchanging used classroom items evolved into the online concept that is now T2T.
Where We Are Today
Since 2015 T2T has partnered with one of the nations premier website and software developers. Our goal is to bring to the internet a robust marketplace open to members and dedicated to helping teachers and others make and save money through the exchange of cash for gently-used commercial classroom products and other great things for the classroom such as teacher-created originals and publications. As T2T's internet store nears completion we have kept communications with likely members open and are asking for their participation in our survey to help fine tune our end product. This is your opportunity to help shape a new industry dedicated entirely to your needs!
To understand T2T's history it is important to first understand a few facts related to elementary education here in the United States.
There are currently 3.3 million full time elementary school teachers in the U.S.A. This number includes full time teachers working in elementary schools, combined elementary/secondary schools, private elementary schools and faith-based elementary schools scattered throughout the nations 13,600 school district regions.
These dedicated educators serve 35.1 million children enrolled in over 129,000 separate public and private schools. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected a 17.4% job growth rate for preschool teachers to continue until 2022. This projected growth of preschool teachers also signals an expected growth in the number of elementary school teachers rippling its way through all grade levels over the next several years.
How We Began
During our final development steps, the most important lesson we learned was to listen to our customers and those most likely to join into the membership role. We have kept the communications lines completely open as we continue to fine tune our software and online store by implementing the many suggestions and comments that we have received.
If you would like to help us improve the developing T2T online store we ask that you click the red "Survey" link below and participate in this 1-minute survey.
You Can Help Develop T2T!
Increased Cost to Teachers
On average, school teachers spend approximately $500 of their annual income to purchase school supplies and other classroom products. In a 40-year career this annual out-of-pocket expense averages about $20,000. The annual level of out-of-pocket expense for elementary school teachers alone fuels a 1.65 billion dollar commercial industry!
Between 2014 and 2019 the inflation rate in the U.S.A. is expected to be about 2%. Applying this inflation rate to the Bureau of Labor Statistics growth rate of 17.4% for full time employed teachers boosts the annual out-of-pocket expense by teachers to a staggering 2.2 billion dollars! No other labor segment benefits from this level of voluntary cash outlay from the payroll of its own workforce.