High Cost of High School Seniors

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) -- In the next few weeks, high school seniors across Region 8 will be turning in their tassels for diplomas...for most, it's a milestone event that caps off 13 years of school.  But for some parents, that final year can be a tough one, especially financially.

"I wouldn't do anything differently, we've had a lot of fun this year and it's been a lot of excitement," said JHS Senior Brittnay Carlton.

Brittnay Carlton is nearly to the end of her high school career.  She'll graduate from Jonesboro High School later this month.  The memories she'll walk away with will be priceless, but her mom says they've added up.

"I didn't realize how expensive announcements were. The senior pictures we were kind of prepared for," said Lisa Carlton, "The dress we had bought before so we knew senior prom would be expensive but announcements, I was not prepared for how expensive they were. And then to mail them all, $0.41 for each one."

With rising gas and food prices, the cost of being a high school senior can have a big impact on families.  Carlton's mom spent around $150 on announcements and $650 on senior pictures.

"Prom, overall, dress, shoes, jewelry-which she already had, the tux, flowers, corsage, dinner probably between the two of them cost almost $1,000," said Lisa Carlton.

Brittnay Carlton works 25-30 hours a week helping to pay off her car and her senior bills, her mom says every little bit helps.

"It's helped for me to appreciate everything because most high school students don't have to work or pay for everything so it's really helped me a lot," said Brittnay Carlton.

Reps at Brown's Graduation Supply in Jonesboro tell Region 8 News that most students purchase their senior class rings when they are juniors to help alleviate some of those senior costs.