• What you can do to make sure you're buying safe school supplies for your kids

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    The back to school countdown is on, and the shopping has kicked off. 

    "We go back Aug. 27," said Krystal Danylo of Brighton Heights. 

    While shopping for crayons, notebook, and pencils, many parents don't think much about what are in those supplies.

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    "Didn't even think about it until you just asked it," said father, Dustin Regec.   

    The nonprofit US Pirg tested 27 school supplies in 2018 and found potentially dangerous chemicals in the Board Dudes Dry Erase Markers, Playskool Crayons,  and Jot Three-Ring Binder.

    Made Safe founder and executive director, Amy Ziff, said "the fact that there could be asbestos in crayons" is entirely shocking to parents.

    Made Safe is a nonprofit which helps people find products without known toxic chemicals. Ziff said people should avoid products with fragrances; it's an easy and sometimes cheaper option. 

    "Cutting out fragrance cuts out the potential for hundreds," said Ziff. "Literally hundreds of chemicals that can be wrapped in as part of the fragrance."

    Ziff also advises parents to choose essential material items, like buying soy or beeswax crayons. 

    Danylo said she learned this lesson the hard way after her son's lunch box got recalled last year. She now looks for safety seals. 

    "You go in and read, spend a lot of time in there reading all the products then you go home and do more research," said Danylo. "Cheapest isn't always the best route." 

    We reached out to the school supplies makers mentioned in the U.S. Prig Study. Playskool told us its independent lab testing found no asbestos and all its crayons are tested before coming into the U.S. 
    Mattel told us the Board Dudes Dry Erase markers cited in the report, contain substance levels that fall within the permissible limits.

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