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Sending a child back to school costs over €1,000

Almost a third (31%) of parents find themselves in debt covering back to school costs.

Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

WHILE SCHOOL CHILDREN have just gone on their holidays, the cost of going back to school is already weighing on some parents’ minds.

A new survey from the Irish League of Credit Unions has found that the average cost of sending a child back to school is over €1,185.

The survey says that many parents of school going children are already looking ahead to the back to school shopping season and the challenges it brings for family finances.

Almost a third (31%) of parents find themselves in debt covering back to school costs, borrowing an average of €357.

79% of parents say they are expected to make a ‘voluntary’ contribution to school averaging €118 per child, up from €112 in 2015.

37% of parents feel under pressure to buy branded school supplies, down from 42% in 2015, pressure more evident in secondary school parents.

In terms of what is spent, parents will shell out on average:

  • Extracurricular activities: €185
  • Uniforms: €183
  • Books: €146
  • Lunches: €145
  • After school care: €123
  • Fees/contribution: €113
  • School trips: €115
  • Transport: €101
  • Gym gear: €74

81% of parents of school going children (primary and secondary) feel that the costs of sending their kids back to school is a significant financial burden.

14% of those parents in debt have turned to a moneylender to cover back to school costs. A further 9% of all parents would consider turning to a moneylender to cover the costs of back to school in 2016.

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