Tuesday, January 18th, 2011 - Officeworks National Back to School Survey
Heading back to school isn’t the stressful family ordeal it’s often perceived, with over half of the nation’s children feeling excited about the 2011 academic year, a survey by Officeworks has shown.

Officeworks General Manager of Merchandise and Marketing, David Oakley, says that the company’s National Back to School Survey indicates that most families are reasonably relaxed during the countdown to a new school year.

“The month of January is an incredibly busy time for parents and students, as they prepare for term one. However, the Officeworks Back to School Survey is debunking the theory that it is also a period of high stress.

“We discovered that for over a third of parents, the best thing about the return to school is not the bliss of a quiet house, but rather hearing classroom stories and seeing the progress, growth and development of their children,” said David.

Despite almost 50 per cent of parents feeling organised and prepared for back to school, it was found that 76 per cent of Aussie mums and dads are becoming increasingly anxious about school-yard and cyber bullying.

In an aim to prevent potential problems arising in the school yard, 89 per cent of parents are committed to monitoring their child’s social networking and online activity this school year.

An additional concern for Australian parents includes the costs associated with schooling - one in three identified money as the most difficult element in the return to the classroom.

Sixty five per cent of parents say their back to school budget is largely burnt up by substantial uniform costs.

David says back to school shopping can hit the family budget hard, following the Christmas spending splash.

“Saving money, while educating children is a matter of studying up on entitlements and being savvy about the expenses that come your way.

“Shopping around for stationery and technology items can help recoup some of the money spent on non-negotiable items like uniforms and school fees,” said David.

The survey also revealed that teachers have a measurable impact on where children are schooled and how much they learn, with 64 per cent of parents identifying ‘encouraging’ teachers as key in ensuring their child’s enthusiasm for study and academic success.

In fact, 38 per cent of parents with primary school-aged children look for quality teachers first and foremost when selecting a school for their youngsters.

According to parents, school teachers play a crucial role in leading children on their academic journey, and teachers who are passionate and caring are highly sought after.
The Officeworks National Back to School Survey asked 1,000 Australian parents with children aged five to 11-years to share their thoughts, hope and fears for the 2011 school calendar.

Visit www.officeworks.com.au/school for further information on getting ready for back to school including budget tips, useful time saving services and parental advice.

Contact Profile

Eli Grynberg

P: 03 8643 1624
M: 0401 135 713
W: www.officeworks.com.au

Keywords

cyber bullying, school, back to school, budget, children, parents

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