We all know that Target, KMart, Staples and other national chains all offer massive back-to-school sales. But what if you prefer the mom and pop shop? Here are few suggestions of places that offer good back-to-school sales during that time of the year, as well as good deals all year long.

(credit: tnartsupply.com)

Top Notch Art Centre

411 S. Craig Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
(412) 683-4444

Top Notch Art Centre, as its name suggests, caters to the aspiring artist. They’ve been open since 1971. They offer a killer deals for students: 20% off every day. They also usually have a month-long 40% off sale just after the start of the fall term. If that’s not enough, they routinely offer 40% off anything on their web store. So now your aspiring artist can get their supplies, cheap.

(credit: storehouseforteachers.org)

Storehouse for Teachers

317  S. Main Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15220
(412) 922-6500

SFT touts itself as a “free store” for teachers. Their goal is to provide teachers free classroom and school supplies at no cost. This 501(c)(3) organization isn’t open to the public, but if you’re a teacher with students who need a bit of a helping hand, it’s a good resource.  The program is just getting started, with teachers from 10 pilot schools are able to go to their warehouse to choose what they need. Their pilot program looks to end in 2012, when – if all goes as planned – the program hopes to expand to include all 210 area public schools.