Everything is getting more expensive, and incomes just aren’t covering it as well. So many are having to make cutbacks to ensure they can still afford the essentials. For many of us, one of those cuts could be your child’s excursion, new shoes or a lunch box. What are the options?
No one wants to be in that situation. It’s undeniable school costs are expensive and yet it is so vital. When everything is taken into account; tuition, camps, excursions, sporting and transport; parents are having to find on average $2547 per primary school student, rising to $4793 for secondary school students. By the time you add it all up we are spending $12.9 Billion on back-to-school this year as a nation. The school supplies alone will set parents back $684 for primary school children and $1132 for secondary students.
For many school expenses, the first port of call is your child’s school, especially if you hold a health care card. Your school can connect you with the State Schools Relief Fund (which can help with shoes, unforms and books), help you access the Camps, sports and excursions fund as well as Learning for Life (support provided by the Smith Family) if the school is part of it.
All public schools need to make sure that children don’t miss out on the essentials including devices, books and materials. They will do their best to help connect you.
To find out more you can also look at Ardoch’s school costs guide with a number of resources on where you can seek help or where you can find things at a better price. You can see it here - Ardoch – Our Impact – School costs guide. This includes things such as what government help is available, and organisations that you can reach out to for help with food, rent, clothing, laptops for school, stationary and other school-related expenses. There is also a list of other cost-saving measures below that you might find useful if you don’t already know about them.
Ask Izzy is a great resource to help you find services in a range of areas.
Meal Planning – meal kit services, shopping online - How to save money on your grocery bill (mozo.com.au)
Reduce Utilities – energy saving - Low cost ways to save energy and reduce your energy bill (mozo.com.au)
Look for deals and discounts – Fuel rewards - 7 Best Bargain and Discount Websites in Australia – Debt Negotiators
DIY activities with the kids – Free activities - 104 Free Activities for Kids – Super Fun Quality Time Ideas | Kids Activities Blog
Are there any government vouchers or benefits – https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/guide-to-australian-government-payments?context=1
Grow your own food – Most cost effective vegetables to grow at home – Love of Dirt
If you would like to help families and students that are finding it hard to make ends meet you can:
Make a donation to Ardoch to help fund excursions, incursion or other programs for schools in disadvantaged communitiies
Make a donaton to the State Schools Relief fund – or purchase schools, swimwear or schools basics from them. State Schools’ Relief Online Store (ssr-online-store.myshopify.com)