Home > News > Nation
Monday December 30, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Monday December 30, 2013 MYT 9:59:19 AM
by tan yi liang
Shop till you drop: M. Letchumu (second from left) doing some last minute back-to-school shopping for her kids at Plaza Angsana in Johor Baru.
PETALING JAYA: Parents of school-going children should reuse, recycle and buy in bulk to help keep their expenses down in the new year.
Parent Action Group for Education (PAGE) chairman Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim said many items from previous years could be salvaged and reused.
“Empty pages from last year’s exercise books can be reused as rough paper. It’s all about being creative in how to reuse and recycle items instead of throwing them at the end of the year.
“This is especially true when it comes to stationery. You don’t have to buy a new box of colour pencils or art blocks every year,” she said.
Stationery prices are expected to go up by between 20% and 30% within the first quarter of next year.
Federation of Stationers and Booksellers Association president Tey Tong Sing had said that the increases were necessary as other costs were already on the rise such as fuel prices and freight fees.
Criticising the federation’s plans to increase prices, Noor Azimah said everyone seemed to be passing on the added costs to the consumers as it was the “most convenient” thing to do.
“But costs can be managed to a minimum. How about taking a cut in profits instead of maximising them?” she asked.
Universiti Malaya Educational Psychology and Counselling Department associate professor Mariani Mohd Nor urged parents to exercise caution and shop within their means.
Parents, said Mariani, did not have to dress their children in designer clothes, especially if they could not afford such items.
“Concern arises when those parents who can ill-afford these items still want their children to have all the luxurious and stylish goods. Some even go to the extent of pawning their other household goods,” she told Bernama.
Parents, she added, should explain to their children their real financial situation.
Meanwhile, several parents such as 35-year-old housewife Lin Hassan said they would buy store-brand stationery in bulk from hypermarkets.
“Erasers and pencils can be bought in big boxes so they are a lot cheaper,” she said.
Journalist Pauline Wong, 27, encouraged parents to recycle and conserve these items, such as going paperless and writing on both sides of the paper.
“If you must print something, reduce the ‘thickness’ of the ink. Use pencils wisely by writing down to the nib and don’t sharpen until you absolutely need to,” said Wong.
The Star Online reader Ken Robert advised readers to use refillable fountain pens or buy items during a sale.
Tags / Keywords:
Family & Community, school children, stationary
Copyright © 1995-2014 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)