August and September are traditionally the months when children return to school, and after the upheavals of the pandemic, many are eager to rejoin their classmates. That means spending on school supplies is on the upswing after a year of online learning at home.
Deloitte’s recent 2021 back-to-school survey found the following:
- School spending is poised to rise 16% in 2021 over 2020, projected at $32.5 billion, up from $28.1 billion
- Last year’s spending averaged $529 per child compared to $612 this year
- Purchases of technology products are up 37%
- Traditional supplies have increased by two percent
- Not surprisingly, sales of COVID-related items are up 42% in 2021
Parents are buying traditional back-to-school products mostly at mass merchant stores, although that choice has dropped recently (74% in 2021, 81% in 2020, and 88% in 2019). While online shopping is gaining traction, dollar stores are also more popular, with 41% of shoppers visiting them in 2021, in contrast to 34% in 2020.
With all that said, we wanted to wish those attending - or those sending off - a safe and successful start to the new school year.