In one-fourth of Russia’s regions, the parents of schoolchildren won’t have enough money to buy the necessary school supplies for the year due to price growth. Back-to-school expenses often surpass one family member's average monthly income, according to the estimates of Istories.
Thus, in the Siberian republic of Yakutia, a set of school supplies costs almost 24,000 rubles (~$400) with an average monthly per capita income of 15,500 (~$250). The ratio is similar in Khakassia, Buryatia, Altai, the republics of the North Caucasus, Crimea, the Vladimir Region, and the Ivanovo Region.
Sending a child to school takes less than half of the average monthly income only in six regions, including Moscow.
International sanctions and halted manufacturing have cost many families their livelihood, and the war is driving up prices, so Russian parents have to borrow money from friends, take out loans, and get credit cards simply to send their children to a regular, state-funded public school.
Had the government paid a one-time allowance of 10,000 rubles (~$164) to each family like it did last year, back-to-school expenses would not have exceeded the monthly per capita income in any of the regions. As Meduza wrote earlier, the Russian government is considering such a relief measure.
Meanwhile, Russians are encouraged to go to war in Ukraine to cover their children's school expenses, among other things. Thus, the acting head of the Republic of Mariy El Yury Zaytsev has promised that a contract soldier’s family will have enough “to buy food, clothes, and the necessary school supplies for the academic year”.
However, Russia's military expenses over the six months of war would have been enough to cover the supplies for the country's 15 million schoolchildren in full, Istories points out.