Time for a rethink on expensive school books
MANY parents will be tightening their belts this month as they pay out hundreds of euro for school books ahead of their children's return to school in a few weeks' time.
The average cost of text books for a primary school student is now €125, while the average cost for secondary school pupils is €238 -- over twice the amount of the controversial household tax. A family with three or four children can easily spend €1,000 on text books, copy books, bags and the other paraphernalia.
The really galling fact is that much of this expenditure is unnecessary. Publishers regularly make small changes to text books to force parents to buy new books rather than use hand-me-downs. This has always been a debatable practice. In a recession it is not sustainable.