ECHO COMMENT: Parents trapped by a school uniform prices rip-off
BACK to school? That will be £200 please.
And that's just the average cost of a secondary school uniform. Add on sports gear, classroom equipment and transport costs and it's a surprise we haven't got a revolution on our hands.
There's always been an acceptance that kitting out youngsters for school costs more than we should reasonably expect.
That multiplies in September for the start of the new school year, although the "back to school" signs seem to have been in our shops and supermarkets since long before schools broke up for the summer.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
Many people are doing like Tewkesbury mum Emma Provins and saving where they can by not buying everything direct from the school. But, as Emma says, buying too cheap can be a false economy as the cheaper clothes wear out quickly.
It's all very well for the Local Government Association to tell schools they have a "moral responsibility" to keep prices down.
Many are just not listening and still insist that uniforms and sportswear come from a single recommended shop.
It's time for tougher action – direct from the local authority or elsewhere – to give proper flexibility back to the parents.
An agreed colour and badge should be enough, giving parents more chance to shop around when they can. In the present economic climate, there are more important things for them to spend their money on.
IT'S great news from Hester's Way that many types of crime are falling.
And while it is always possible to read too much into statistics, there is clear evidence that cases of criminal damage in particular are tumbling.
That has to be linked to the fact that youngsters who may previously have been responsible for it now have better things to do.
The Aston Project is giving youngsters the opportunity to do voluntary work that they not only enjoy but are rewarded for. Misbehave though, and they miss out on activities their mates will be taking part in.
Criminal damage may not seem like the most serious crime but it causes misery to all who are caught up in it.
The figures are the perfect legacy for the work PC Lynn Aston started.