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Irish League of Credit Unions shows average spend for school children is up again this year

It's as St Vincent de Paul says it would like to see the upcoming Budget bring in free education

Almost one-third of parents are getting into debt due to rising back-to-school costs.

A survey by the Irish League of Credit Unions shows the average spend per secondary school child is €1,518 and €1,195 at primary school level.

It comes as families are to get a 100 euro boost in the back-to-school allowance, along with a package of other measures to help tackle rising costs.

League of Credit Unions spokesperson, Paul Bailey, says they’ve reached record levels; “What we’re finding since we started doing this survey back in 2017 that these are the highest costs on record so we’re finding secondary school, the cost of sending a child to secondary school is up €27 on last year up to €1,518 and at primary school school level up €9 on last year up to €1,195.”

Dr Trisha Keilthy is Head of Social Justice and Policy at St Vincent de Paul and has been telling KCLR News that they’ve seen 80,000 requests for help so far this year, up 20% on previous years, with many households facing tough choices.

She says her organisation would love to see further provisions for education in the upcoming Budget; Making education genuinely free for children would cost less than the cost of an energy credit for example, so it’s really about making the right choices that benefit people on low incomes that they’re not pushed further into hardship and those that are maybe just about getting by aren’t pulled in for the first time either”.