I guess the tradeoff for not having to deal with runny noses is no gifts?!
When the kids were in elementary, I used to do a classwide "needs" list...interview the teacher about wants/needs for her classroom (plus a few personal preferences like lotion, gum, etc.) and pass it out to all the kids. I did it through the first year in middle school, then the PTA took it over and all the teachers get it now. (THere was honestly some serious jealousy that some teachers were getting TONS of "just right" gifts while the others were getting practially nothing. Odd.)
The high-school teachers' interaction is nearly 100% with the student (not parent), so I just went with what I used to love...classroom supplies. (My husband said we got a raise when I quit teaching...I now spend that money on craft supplies, so I'm not sure he's right...!)
Wish your DH "Happy Summer" from me!