We went shopping for school uniform today. First up was Thomas who was easily sorted with a trip to Sainsburys. 2 pairs of grey trousers, 2 x 3pk of blue polo shirts and a pack of socks. Total cost: £21.00.
The only item school insists on with a logo is a jumper/cardigan so the children are easily recognisable on any trips. These are sold direct from school and cost £10. I'll only buy one of these because he refuses to wear it apart from when it's officially necessary.
He had new shoes last term and these still fit, so no cost there at the moment. His PE kit and pumps still fit him as well.
Amy is slightly more expensive. There is an official school uniform shop in town and one store in the shopping centre that sells uniform at a slightly lower cost, maybe £1-£2 per item.
We bought socks, 2 skirts and 3 white shirts which cost £47, (she likes a fresh shirt on every day and already has 3 that were new last term).
Still going strong from our initial Year 7 purchases are her school tie, school blazer, trainers, football boots, football socks, rugby top, PE shirt and shorts.
She will need a new pair of shoes though. She chooses to go to Shoe Zone for these because she prefers a fashion shoe, even though they can only be black. She gets through about 3 pairs every year. She's not particularly light on her feet and walks 2 miles home each day.
So, to send them back to school has so far cost me £68. On top of this I have to buy Thomas' jumper and Amy's shoes - another £30 max.
Next term winter coats will be purchased.
Even though we haven't had to buy too much it's still cost just under £100. I can see how this could easily be more expensive if children have grown, (especially boys with their shoes, football boots and trainers) and also if schools insist on branded uniforms from a specific retailer. There is also a definite gap between kitting out a child at primary school than one who is at high school.
It looks like Amy has finished growing but no doubt Thomas will shoot up over the next year so I expect I'll have to buy more uniform at some point.