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Back to school is tougher under Labor

Joint media release

Shadow Treasurer, Angus Taylor
Shadow Minister for Education, Sarah Henderson

Getting Aussie kids back to school has never been more expensive – with parents copping an almost 5 per cent spike in education costs since Labor came to government.

It means higher fees and more back pocket pain for school staples like uniforms and stationery.

On average, parents are spending $2,547 per primary school child per year and $4,793 for each child in secondary school[1].

Shadow Treasurer Angus Taylor and Shadow Minister for Education Sarah Henderson said Labor’s cost-of-living crisis was making it harder to send children to school ready to learn.

“Going back to school has never been more expensive as the cost-of-living puts the clamp on family budgets,” Mr Taylor said.

“At the same time Australian households are being hit with higher energy bills, higher mortgage repayments, and higher grocery prices.

“Before the last election, Prime Minister Albanese promised Australians would be better off under a Labor government.

“Instead, the cost of almost everything has gone up and Australian households are going backwards because Labor has been focused on the wrong priorities.”

Senator Henderson said struggling Australian families were having to make financial sacrifices in order to meet the average 4.8 per cent[2] increase in education costs.

School supplies, including textbooks, stationery, and uniforms, are estimated to cost $684 per primary student and $1132 per secondary student[3].

“Education is a basic right but under Labor’s cost of living crisis it is getting increasingly unaffordable, and that means that Aussie children are missing out,” Senator Henderson said.

“Every parent across Australia wants to ensure their children receive the education they deserve – yet it is becoming an enormous financial burden.

“Many families can’t even contemplate going to the movies or going out to dinner because they can no longer make ends meet.

“Now, we are hearing that parents have even said they may be forced to pull their kids out of extra-curricular activities because of the cost.

“The Albanese Government must come up with a plan to tackle inflation so that Australians don’t continue to pay the price for Labor’s bad decisions,” Senator Henderson said.

[1] Finder, Back to school costs 2024, 10 January 2024.

[2] ABS, Monthly CPI Indicator, Nov 2023.

[3] ABS, Monthly CPI Indicator – November, Education Index, 10 January 2023. Note, for CPI purposes, the Education group comprises all expenditure on primary, secondary and tertiary education, and preschool services. Both private and public institutions are included.




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