Sinn Féin councillor, Caroline Mulvey, is calling on the government address the rising back to school costs "crippling families throughout the country".
Speaking to www.leitrimobserver.ie this morning, Cllr Mulvey said: ”I have been contacted by a number of distraught parents in recent weeks who are struggling to gather enough money in order to purchase the necessities to send their children to school. While the current Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance will help it is nowhere near what is needed to fund a child going to school.
A recent Irish League of Credit Unions recent survey has put the average back to school spend at €1,048 for a primary school child and €1,401 for a secondary school child.
The survey also found that 29% of families will get into debt to cover these costs.
"The recent announcement of an increase of 25% to the Back to School Clothing & Footwear Allowance is welcome but it is only a drop in the ocean when we look at the actual real life costs," said Cllr Mulvey.
“Sinn Féin supports the reduction of back to school costs by increasing the School Books Grant by 30%. Budget 2018 affords the opportunity to do this and I am calling on the Government to increase the Back to School Clothing and Footwear allowance by €50 for both primary and secondary school children to help struggling families.”