Parents feeling the pinch of higher-priced school supplies
BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) - Research shows families are expecting to spend more per child as inflation rises. According to the National Retail Federation, 38% of parents are cutting back in some areas to cover the costs of essentials for the upcoming school year. Amber Robertson said she has already exceeded last year’s budget.
“Last year, I think all-in-all for my four kids I paid probably $600 for school clothes for all four kids,” Robertson said. “This year alone, I’ve already paid $300 just on my 1 year old and my 7 year old.”
Robertson said she’s also seen basic school supplies like paper and pencils rise by at least $2. Kristie Mitchell is a mother of three and said simply looking at her kids’ school supply lists is stressful.
“I have to look at what I have to manage with,” Mitchell said. “Also being a single parent, I have to manage with bills, I have to make sure the kids still have a roof over their heads, we have gas in the car.”
Mitchell and Robertson aren’t the only ones feeling the pinch. Robertson is the founder of the non-profit Brazos Valley Blessings and said some Brazos Valley parents are in need more than ever.
“Families are reaching out saying I’ve never had to do this, I’ve never asked for help before, I’m the person that usually makes sure my kids’ teachers have everything that they need,” Robertson said. “However, now they’re having to ask where are the drives at and how do I apply.”
Robertson believes preparation is key when it comes to back-to-school shopping. She said parents should start by evaluating the condition of what their kids already have.
“What can they wear again for another couple of months, whether it be the shorts that you bought at the end of the last school year or maybe a couple of t-shirts that they can still wear or the jeans,” Robertson said. “Those shoes, let’s wash them up, let’s get them cleaned up.”
The non-profit founder said doing that can provide more funds for school supplies and ultimately help teachers who normally buy supplies for students with their personal funds. If parents are able to support teachers this coming school year, Robertson suggests using teacher wish lists from department stores.
Copyright 2022 KBTX. All rights reserved.