Parents are spending almost €1,400 getting their child ready for secondary school and almost €950 to send them to primary school, according to a survey from the Irish League of Credit Unions.
The survey found that three-quarters of parents find the scale of back-to-school costs a financial burden, with a third going into debt over it.
Parents said that in order to afford the basics, two-thirds will drop extra curricular activities, while 30% will not be able to give money for school trips.
Almost three-quarters of those surveyed said schools are not doing enough to keep costs down, with many suggesting that book rental schemes and generic uniforms would help.
The survey found that parents are spending €1,399 for each secondary school child, up €20 on last year, while at primary level costs have dropped €50 to €949.
The numbers getting into debt over back-to-school costs has remained steady at 36%, the level of average debt has fallen by €83.
Of those parents in debt, 24% said they had turned to a moneylender, a slight drop on last year, with the average amount borrowed at €439.
The survey also found that the most expensive item at second level were books, at €220 compared with €200 last year, and uniforms/clothing next at €200, up from €179 last yer.
Parents of primary school children have cut back on school lunches, spending €102 compared to €142 last year and after school care costs have also seen a drop from €140 to €117.