Ministry of Education looking into the cost of school uniforms

For many parents, the cost of school uniforms can be overwhelming.
For many parents, the cost of school uniforms can be overwhelming. Photo credit: Getty.

The Ministry of Education hopes to relieve some pressure off stressed parents by looking into whether the cost of school uniforms can be reduced. 

With the first school term of the year on the way, many parents are feeling the stress of mounting school costs.  

"We understand that for some families, meeting back-to-school costs can be a struggle," deputy secretary Katrina Casey told NZME. "There is work underway but it is in its early stages."

She said it's important that there are no barriers to accessing education, including the cost of uniforms, but there are no plans to subsidise them yet.

Research conducted by school uniform retailer Postie shows 70 percent of parents make sacrifices to be able to afford school uniform items.

Consumer NZ head of research Jessica Wilson said the ministry's decision could have a significant impact on household budgets.

"Given the costs of kitting out your kids, parents are likely to welcome news the ministry is investigating whether prices can be reduced," Wilson told NZME. 

For mother Terisa Corditz the cost of school uniforms are overwhelming.  

"To get both winter and summer, we're looking at over $1000 or near $1500 between the four children," she told Newshub.

Variety CEO Lorraine Taylor says the children's charity already has a waitlist of 500 children needing sponsorship for their back to school costs. 

"Some parents just simply aren't coping and of course that stress goes onto the children because they're really well aware of their parents financial situation."