Cost of the School Day | CPAG

Cost of the School Day

breaking down the financial barriers to education
Front page of calendar

Cost of the School Day Calendar

The Cost of the School Day calendar helps schools identify possible cost barriers during the academic year and make sure all pupils can fully participate in education. The calendar has ideas and good practice examples from schools across England, Scotland and Wales.

“If all of your friends or people you know go to the after school clubs, school trips, that kind of isolates you from them. You're singled out, you're not with them, just a spare person.

Boy, age 15


Cost of the School Day helps all children and young people to take part and be happy at school. We work with everyone to make sure money is never an issue.

Uniforms, trips, school lunches, gym kits, pencils and pens, and dress down days can be difficult to afford for low-income families. When children and young people can’t take part in opportunities because of cost, they miss out and feel excluded, and it is harder for them to learn, achieve and be happy at school. 

Illustration showing various school costs weighing on a child and parent



Talking about Costs and Money at School

Talking about costs and money at school can be difficult, but this animation and resource has lots of great practice and ideas from parents and carers to help schools get it right.

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Cost of the School Day Films

Find out how schools around Scotland are making Cost of the School Day changes.

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About our team

The Cost of the School Day team works across the UK including in Scotland, England and Wales.

The difference Cost of the School Day makes

Taking a Cost of the School Day approach helps schools to mitigate the effects of child poverty.

Cost of the School Day Resources

We provide a range of free resources for schools and local authorities who are trying to remove or reduce financial barriers to education.


Helping your whole school community to address the Cost of the School Day - the newly updated Toolkit includes lots of resources, information and great practice ideas.

What’s already happening

Just some of the great Cost of the School Day initiatives in schools.

Cost of the School Day podcast

Our newly launched Cost of the School Day podcast features short episodes where we share insights, ideas and inspiration to help schools tackle poverty in the classroom.

Cost of Learning in Lockdown

To understand how lockdown has impacted children’s experience of learning this year, our Cost of the School Day programme conducted some research through surveys and interviews.
Little girl in beaded dress

Local authorities taking the lead

What local authorities around Scotland are doing to address the Cost of the School Day.
Man and child

Parents, carers and Parent Councils

Working together to make a difference to the school day.
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reports and publications

Further reading about the Cost of the School Day.

Latest news

Making festive fun more inclusive

02 December 2021
For many children, the run-up to the Christmas holidays is packed with excitement, twinkling lights and glitter. However, this fun and festivity also means additional school-related expenses for families. Our blog explores how these cost pressures can affect families and children, and how schools can shift towards a more inclusive festive season.

Cost of the School Day Advent Calendars

In December, school calendars are packed with additional events and activities, which often come at a cost. Our Advent calendar has daily thinking points and ideas for schools to help them support low-income families and make sure the lead-up to Christmas is full of inclusive fun for pupils.

Let’s not stop at school uniform

20 November 2021
The release of the new statutory guidance for schools in England on uniform on Friday was welcome news, but let's not stop there.