SEPTEMBER’S start of the new school year in Spain is dreaded by most youngsters after the long summer break, but there’s a different concern for parents who would normally relish getting their offspring out of the way.

Families are having to work out the cost of going back to school which according to price comparison site Idealo works out at an average of €449 per student.

That total does not cover school uniforms and additional expenses, with the main item being textbooks, which come in at over €309- 19% more than in 2021.

Compared to other countries like the UK, most Spanish families have to pay for books used in schools.

Idealo’s Kike Aganzo said: “Spain has the highest prices for textbooks in the European Union which impacts on family budgets.”

The picture also varies around the country with some regional governments covering the full cost of books or at least partially paying for them.

The most expensive regions are the Valencian Community, Catalunya, and Navarra, with Extremadura, Castilla-La Mancha, and the Canary Islands at the other end.

The National Catholic Confederation of Families and Parents of Students goes far further than the Idealo study and says textbook costs are just part of the problem.

President Rafael Araujo said: “This will be the most expensive school year in history and families will have to bear the cost.”

“It’s not just books, but school buses, food, uniforms, excursions, insurance, extra-curricular events, and AMPA(parent-teacher association) fees,” he added.

Araujo estimated that costs per pupil could come to €1,500 for a school year.

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