For parents, back to school a financial strain

Getting your kids ready for school this year could cost a lot more.

The National Retail Federation, which tracks back-to-school costs, says on average a parent will spend $603.63 on each child.

"Wow, that's crazy. That's a high price," says Chris Walsh of Somers, whose twin daughters are starting sixth grade. "I remember as a kid it was a few pencils and a few notebooks. That's all you needed."

And back-to-school costs aren't only related to the increased price of school supplies and clothes. Cash-strapped schools are also turning to so-called pay-to-play fees - charging for activities such as sports, band and drama.

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