Alarming data shows 1 in 3 families struggle to pay for back-to-school items

The holidays are almost over, with parents preparing to send their children back to school next week…

However, shocking new data has revealed an alarming statistic that one in three children had gone without school items because they were simply too expensive for the family budget.

According to RACQ Bank spokesperson Lucinda Ross, research showed on average families spent more than $3,500 per child to cover school fees, iPads, books, uniforms and other items at the start of the year.


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“It’s concerning many Queensland parents are struggling to pay for back-to-school expenses,” Ms Ross said.

“While more than half do set a budget for these school expenses, nearly 40 percent are adding to their credit card bill or signing up for a payment plan to get by.

“Using credit or payment plans can provide short-term relief from purchasing an item, but it does mean families are setting themselves up for future financial stress.”

With many retailers promoting back to school sales and discounts, Ms Ross encouraged families to shop around to find items within their budget.

“Start saving early in the year for the following year’s back to school costs to ensure you’re prepared for any unplanned expenses that might arise,” she said.

“Take advantage of those back to school sales but make sure you also reuse items or buy second-hand where possible.

“If you can, purchase using cash or debit and set aside any money saved for next year.”

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J Hurley

My nephew was made to get off a bus along with 100 other students on their way to a day of compulsory sports. This was because his parents had been unable to pay for his school fees. This happened last year in a Gold Coast High School. Disgraceful, not only for the actions of the school, by doing so, letting my nephew know of their financial situation but also the rest of his school mates. I thought fees were not compusory.