Monster tech bill tots up for school families

  • 59% of parents spending up to $500, while 25% spending $500-$1000 on back-to-school 
  • 23% of parents say their financial situation is worse than same time last year 
  • More parents than not want their children to return to the classroom 
  • Parents spending an average of $1,000 on laptops alone 

A new survey of 1,000 Australian parents, conducted by Savvy, has technology purchases such as laptops, tablets, and accessories are topping the bill for back-to-school purchases in 2022.    

59% of parents say they’ll be spending up to $500 on back-to-school items per child, followed by a quarter who will be spending between $500 and $1,000. 

Laptops (28%) and tablets (25%) are the must-have items for school, in light of schools not providing them for children instead. Other items are headphones (41%), USB drives (31%), and computer accessories such as mice and keyboards (22%). 

Parents reported a mean average spend of $1035 on laptops and $604 for tablets. Computer accessories were the next most expensive item (avg. spend of $230) and headphones ($71.) 

39% of parents are sending one child to school; 41% are sending two. For the 5% who are sending four or more, their tech bill may be very costly indeed. 

When asked about preparedness for home study, should the need arise, 16% of parents stated they were “well prepared”, while 36% answered “prepared”. Only 23% responded with “neutral”. 

Coupled to this, 29% of parents say their financial situation has worsened since last year, adding another stress to their finances. 

Though tech is one part of the back-to-school equation, parents are spending up on school essentials such as uniforms (68% of parents), shoes (74%), stationery (65%), and backpacks (54%). 48% reported that they would be purchasing COVID-safety equipment such as masks and hand sanitiser. 

Further expenses cited by parents include after school sport (47%), after school care (28%), and clubs (19%). 

The survey delved into the past two years of on-and-off at-home learning, financial stresses, and how much they will be spending on essential educational items.

60% of parents said they are feeling “COVID fatigue” or weariness associated with the ongoing pandemic, (43% answering “somewhat” and 17%, “significant”) The highest proportion was found in the ACT (82%) followed by the most locked-down state in the world, Victoria (68%). 

Of the parents surveyed, 71% were sending their children to primary school and 29% to high school. 17% of parents overlapped, sending at least one child to each. 

36% of parents said they were more confident than not to send their children back amid the COVID-19 Omicron outbreak. 30% of parents said that school should start as “normal” while a further 30% said that school should start on time, provided greater COVID-safety measures are in place. 

School News

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