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Parents of public school students spent less on their children’s education in fiscal 1996 than in fiscal 1994, while parents of private kindergarten children and private junior high school students spent more, according to an Education Ministry survey released Tuesday.Parents of public junior high school students spent an average of 432,000 yen on their children’s education in fiscal 1996, down 2.8 percent from the previous survey for fiscal 1994. The average amount spent on private junior high school students reached nearly 1,178,000 yen — or about 2.7 times more than that for public school students — and up 6.3 percent from the 1994 survey. The fiscal 1996 survey shows that the average total cost of educating students who attended public schools from kindergarten through high school amounted to 5,178,000 yen, while the corresponding figure for children who attended private kindergartens, public elementary schools and private junior high and high schools was 80 percent more at 9,290,000 yen.The report was compiled from a survey of 24,000 parents of students at 950 public and private primary and secondary schools nationwide — except private elementary schools — on their spending for their children’s school fees, school meals and extracurricular activities.Sending a child to a public kindergarten cost parents an average of 242,740 yen while attending a private kindergarten cost 511,290 yen in fiscal 1996. Parents of public elementary school students spent an average of 307,310 yen. The average cost of educating a public high school student was 520,660 yen and a private high school child cost 966,260 yen.School fees increased from the previous survey in all schools by an average of 4 percent, except for public junior high schools, whose fees declined slightly. Average spending on cram schools increased for junior high school students from fiscal 1994, costing 153,817 yen for those attending public junior high schools, up 5.7 percent, and 123,890 yen for private junior high school students, up 21.1 percent.

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