Academic journal article Science and Children

School Activities Too Expensive for Some

Academic journal article Science and Children

School Activities Too Expensive for Some

Article excerpt

One in four students from lower income families did not participate in a single sport, club, or art program last school year, a new national poll shows. One contributing factor: school activities cost too much.

Among parents from households earning less than $60,000 a year, 27% say their child was less involved with school activities because of cost. But financial challenges were not limited to lower-income families. Twelve percent of higher-income parents (making more than $60,000 per year) also cite price as the reason for their child's decline in activities.

"Participation in school activities has been linked to better grades and lower dropout rates," says Sarah Clark, the codirector of the poll. "However, we found that a substantial portion of students, particularly those in lower income groups, are not fully engaged in a well-rounded school experience that includes activities--and too often, it's because of cost."

The nationally representative household survey included 666 parents with at least one child in middle or high school. Parents were asked about their child's participation in school activities for the 2015-2016 school year.

Sports were more expensive than other types of school activities. The average, annual cost per student was $302 to play sports, $218 for arts, and $124 for clubs, according to the poll. …

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