This year seems to be flying by, doesn’t it? It doesn’t seem two minutes since we were celebrating Christmas and, all of a sudden, we’re on the cusp of summer! With this comes the dreaded summer school holidays – juggling childcare and work commitments, followed by the need to prepare them for the return to class with all of the back to school essentials.
It’s easy to get snowed under if you don’t stay organised when it comes to the back to school plans, especially if you leave everything until the last minute to sort. The number of parents panicking during the last weekend before school restarts in September, because the school uniforms at George have sold out in their child’s size and school colours, can be drastically reduced with a little forward planning.
The cost of school uniforms can easily run away with you if you’re not careful, especially if you opt to buy clothing items with the school emblem sewn on to them. Rather than buying everything from the specialist supplier, consider purchasing their school uniforms from George at ASDA, where your money will go much further. Most schools would be more than happy with uniforms that aren’t branded anyway, as long as they’re in the same school colours (i.e. blue, green or red, for example), and it’s an easy way to save money and reduce worries about uniform getting lost, damaged or stained.
Don’t buy too much, either. Many uniform checklists recommend a pair of trousers or a skirt for every day of the week, and the same applies for polo shirts as well. Does your child really need that many uniform sets, though? Whether you do the laundry daily, or even if some pieces can be re-worn because they’re not dirty, you can save money by not buying quite so much!
Don’t leave buying school uniform requirements until the last minute if you can help it. Sure, kids will likely grow between now and then, but buying clothes in the next size up will mean that you can spread the cost of the back to school basics, while also meaning that everything is ready to go in plenty of time. That said, you should probably wait until closer to the time to buy school shoes, because ensuring that the shoes fit their feet perfectly is essential.
Uniform aside, there are other things that you can buy in advance and stow away until the first day back at school. If they need a new lunch bag, or school backpack, you can buy these anytime (in the sales or as a birthday present perhaps?). However, if they’re returning to school after a summer break, and you wish to save a little money, ask yourself whether they even need a new backpack or lunch bag!
If your older children have younger siblings, don’t throw out their uniform when they’ve outgrown it. If it’s still in good condition, wash and iron it, and then store it in a vacuum storage bag until their younger siblings can wear it. Obviously, this might not be possible if they end up going to different schools, for whatever reason, but there’s no reason why you shouldn’t keep things, just in case.
Thinking ahead and planning things in advance will mean that, as September draws nearer, you’ll be less stressed about the whole back to school process and can take it all in your stride!
‘in collaboration with George’