The cost of going back to school
7 January 2019 Education Issues
WA parents are likely to shell out an average $439 to equip each child for the new school year, a report reveals.
Nationally, parents will spend an average $476 for items including uniforms, shoes, backpacks, lunch boxes and stationery.
Even though most WA schools do not resume classes until February 4, the report shows many parents start on their school book lists as soon as Christmas is over.
The report, based on a survey of more than 1000 parents by YouGov Galaxy for Big W, found that one in five parents shopped for school supplies two to six months before the new school year, while 30 per cent started shopping one month ahead.
Wanneroo parent Leanne Callcott said she had already spent about $700 on school supplies for her sons, Jaxon, 12, and Mitchell, 10, not counting new uniforms. She said it was more expensive this year because Jaxon was starting high school at St Stephen’s School.
“I had budgeted for it, but it’s a strain given the time of year,” she said. “I try to stock up on stationery when it goes on special throughout the year.”
WA Council of State School Organisations president Kylie Catto said some families could find it helpful to start early and buy smaller pieces over a longer time.