Like most mums and dads, I’ve been looking forward to the summer holidays. But with school out for summer, the kids are already on my back.
They’ve only been off a few weeks, but I can see the change in my bank balance already.
It is no secret that sending the kids back to school seems to get more expensive every year. Last week, the Centre for Economics and Business Research published the results of a survey which showed the average cost of sending a child to school in the UK is £1,077 for the duration of their compulsory education – rising at the fastest rate for 10 years. We spend on average £10.5 billion a year on school costs, with almost half of that taken up by school uniforms.
This month we lowered the price for Asda’s school uniform to £4. A great quality polo shirt, skirt or trousers and a sweatshirt can now be bought for under a fiver. At George you pay the same price whether the uniform is for a three-year-old or a 12-year-old.
A market was never killed by giving customers better value for money. Price is key, but value for money, based on quality and price, is what really drives business.
Thanks to these low prices, the days when we would all be dressed in hand-me-downs are over. With retailers working hard to lower their prices, more parents can afford to buy a new wardrobe for the start of term. In 2007, our uniform retailed at £6.25 and in 2005 it was £10.25, so the price cut this year is hopefully helping families with ever-increasing costs.
All kids need some kind of school uniform and it is our responsibility as retailers to make them more affordable for everyone.
Anthony Thompson is managing director of George at Asda