Offaly TD Barry Cowen has said this week he is extremely concerned that parents are facing a very difficult balancing act for the new school year with education costs up five per cent in the past year, on top of the cut to the back-to-school allowance.
“Parents are already trying to figure out how they’re going to cope with back-to-school costs and manage their finances heading into September,” Deputy Cowen said.
“The new school term is always a financial pressure point in the year but it has become much more difficult for parents in the last few years. The latest inflation figures show costs in the education sector are up again, almost five per cent since April last year.
"That will have a huge impact on families. Households are already struggling to make ends meet every week and also have to contend with the property tax this year and a possible increase in the tax next year. This is on top of the cuts to child benefit and back-to-school allowance and the tax on maternity benefit.”