Top Tips for Buying School Shoes


It’s been several months since the kids went back to school for the new school year, and you may be looking at your little boy’s school shoes thinking that they’ve seen better days. All those afternoons of playing football with their school friends in the playground will have undoubtedly taken their toll on your son’s shoes, which will, by now, likely be scuffed and looking less and less black by the minute.

Many parents will have to invest in at least one more pair of school shoes before the school year is out, and if you’re in need of a few helpful hints, here are some that could help your decision:


• Measure both feet because, often, feet are different sizes to eachother. Whether you measure the feet yourself either in a store or at home, or you ask for the help of a specialist fitter, remember that most children will have one foot that is slightly longer and wider than the other – it’s perfectly normal.

• Ensure that you can fit one finger between your child’s heel and the back of the shoe.

• Make sure that the shoes you look at are cushioned and stable, so that their feet receive both internal and external support. Remember that high arches and flat feet are common in kids, so the shoes that you buy need to account for this.

• Also make sure that there’s a little wiggle room at the tip of the shoe so that they can move their toes around.

• Remember that school shoes may not last a full school year, because of growth spurts and wear and tear. As a rule of thumb, after the age of 3, a child’s feet grow about half a shoe size every 6 months.

• Weigh up the options you have. Better quality shoes will last longer, but you will often find more affordable shoes are available that are just as good. Look for leather shoes with double stitching around the toe area if you wish to invest in the best quality.

• Avoid slip-on shoes for school; podiatrists recommend Velcro, buckles or laces. It may be tempting to buy second hand but, if possible, it’s best to buy new because second hand shoes will have moulded to the previous owner’s feet.

• Bear in mind that shoe sizes can vary slightly shop-to-shop so always try the shoes on rather than assuming they will fit.

• Use scuff-protection to prolong the life of the shoes you buy, so you don’t have to spend money unnecessarily. Regularly using shoe polish can also help to ensure your kids look smart for school (even if they come home looking like something a cat dragged in!)

Children spend over 30 hours a week in their school shoes, which just emphasises the importance of choosing a pair that don’t just look good and are durable, but are also well fitting to prevent permanent foot damage. Take a look at the various styles to suit your budget and your child’s style and cross something else off your to-do list!

How long do you find your children’s school shoes last? Share your experiences with me in the comments