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Whoa, Momma!

Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Tracey Henry and Suzannah DiMarzio

The joys of a kid's senior year sure add up



It's been so long since I was a senior in high school, I was astonished to read this story from the Fort Myers News-Press on how a tough economy is making senior year hard on some families. Granted, a lot of these costs are luxuries. (The exploding costs of senior prom is a whole 'nother debate.) But $47 for SAT tests, $200 for a cap and gown and $45 for every college application sure adds up. Look at this list and flinch:

• Yearbook: $60-$75
• Senior pictures: $200 and up
• Senior pictures session fee: $30 - $60
• Senior ad for yearbook: $80
• Cap and gown: $70 and up
• Homecoming dress: $80
• Homecoming ticket: $20
• Dinner before Homecoming: $20
• College application fees: $45 on average plus $1 for transcripts for each school
• SAT fee: $47
• SAT subject test: $21
• SAT language with listening tests: $42
• ACT fee: $33- $48
• Club T-shirts: $10 each
• Senior class T-shirt: $10
• Senior class sweatshirt: $30
• Prom dress: $100-$300
• Hair expense for prom: $50 and up
• Nails for prom: $30-$50
• Limo for prom: $25-$50 per person
• Tuxedo for prom: $90-$150
• Grad bash at Universal Studios or Disneyland: $100
• Friday night football games: $5 entry, $3 to park, $5-$10 for dinner
• Class ring: $200 - $400

Should we start a Christmas club-type account freshman year to save up for senior year? What would you cut from this list if you had to?

UPDATE: I alerted reporter Mae Yousif-Bashi that we had put her story up for discussion on the blog today and she passed along that one of her readers put a smile on her face this morning. She sent Mae an e-mail saying she wants to purchase a yearbook for one of the students in the story, Taylor. "It just made me think there really are some good people out there! And I see it in other ways, too, as a reporter, but it just warmed my heart."

I agree. It's the best part about the job. I don't think I've ever written a sad story that didn't prompt good people to step forward and offer some help.

--Sharon Kennedy Wynne

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[Last modified: Wednesday, December 1, 2010 9:14am]


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