A boy and a girl sitting in a chair in a school class, wearing kids' school shoes.

How Long Should Kids’ School Shoes Last

Kids’ school shoes should last around 6 months. Of course, this can vary since it’s just a rule-of-a-thumb type of thing. It mostly depends on the overall quality of the shoes, how they are taken care of, and how fast kids’ feet grow. 

Let’s dive a little deeper and explain somehow long school shoes last, how can we prolong their life span, and how many pairs school kids’ need.

How Long Should Kids’ School Shoes Last?

The kids under 8 tend to go up a size every 6 months or so. This tells us that the life span of kids’ school shoes will be around 6 months or around 700 hours. And typically, this coincides with when their shoes start to wear out. Here are the top three things to consider about kids’ school shoes.  

#1 Remember that kids’ feet grow fast! Depending on your kids’ age, their feet can grow up to two sizes in a year. In order to keep their shoes in good condition, it is important to check them regularly and replace them if they feel tight. The good idea is to measure your kids’ feet each time you plan on buying new ones. Use the Footmeter tool to get 100% precise sizes without spending a single dime. 


#2 Consider the shoes’ overall quality. There is a difference between expensive and cheap shoes. Luckily, this does not mean that kids’ school shoes will cost you an arm and a leg. However, higher quality shoes with better construction are usually more expensive, meaning they will last longer. But the price can fool you, so our advice is to always read reviews and research before shopping. You might find high-end school shoes for a great deal!

#3 Don’t forget about wear and tear. While your kid might outgrow its shoes, it is more likely to tear them out. Wearing those shoes to school daily, running around, playing, and walking, it’s impossible to think there will be no tearing down. In the case when your kids’ shoes are still in good condition, but the heels are worn down, or there is a hole in them, you can try repairing them yourself. It is possible to do this by removing the pieces of the shoe’s heels and gluing them back together. Ensure that you have removed all the pieces so that no sharp edges or splinters remain. Also, things like replacement kits and patches can help you repair the heel more easily.

How Often do Kids Need New Shoes?

As mentioned, kids will need new pair of school shoes once in 6 months. This is because kids’ shoes are prone to wear and tear, and they will most likely outgrow them if they don’t have the chance to tear them down.


Girls’ feet tend to grow until the age of 14, while boys’ feet tend to grow until their 16th birthday. Measure their feet often and replace the old shoes with the new ones as soon as you see that they are becoming uncomfortable for kids. 

How to Know When to Replace School Shoes?

Kids’ wardrobe is somewhat easier to maintain and replace than shoes. If the clothes are too big, you can fold them; if they are small, you can still wear them. However, that’s not the case with kids’ shoes.

Their shoes must fit well and be comfortable, impacting their foot development, performance, and health. Let’s see the signs when your kid needs to replace their shoes. 

  • It looks like the shoe is too large or stretched out
  • The shoes have cracks or holes
  • The soles are worn down
  • There is little tread left
  • The feel uncomfortable and/or cause blisters

If any of these signs are present, it’s time for school shoe shopping

How Can I Make my School Shoes Last Longer?

The first and most important thing is to learn how to clean and maintain school shoes. With this proper guide, you can prolong shoe life span before kids outgrow them. However, here are a few tips to take away


Properly storing and cleaning the shoes. Encourage your kid to take off the shoes as soon as he/she returns from school and store them in a dark and dry place. If they are dirty, clean them according to their material. You can use some shoe brushes and a dry piece of cloth to remove the dirt and debris. From time to time, wash them properly.

Be sure to dry them thoroughly. Drying shoes is equally important as cleaning and washing. Avoid placing shoes in direct sunlight or blow-drying since they can lose the glue. Instead, get some paper towels and stuff them inside the shoes. Leave them overnight to absorb the moisture and place them to dry in a dark and dry place. 

Polish the shoes. Even though polishing might sound too much, it can be done in just a few minutes. The shoes can look brand new with some polish, cream, and a dry piece of cloth.  

How Many Pairs of Shoes Do You Need for School?

Two pairs of shoes will be sufficient. This means that it’s good to have that one extra pair of shoes if something unexpected happens to the first ones. A good pair of school shoes will provide your kid with support and protection from the elements during every season of the year.

Tips on How Choose Kids’ School Shoes 

When choosing kids’ school shoes, crucial things to remember are their comfort and durability. The variety of shoes available makes it hard for parents to choose the right one. Here are 10 useful tips to help you choose the appropriate type of school shoe for your kid:

  • Concentrate on the features rather than a particular brand 
  • Maximum comfortability of the shoes
  • Perfect fit for kids’ shoes both in length and width 
  • The increased cushion at the rear
  • A firm heel counter 
  • Convenient fastening option (either laces or Velcro shoes, depending on kids’ capabilities)
  • Flexible midsole that bends at the toes
  • Lightweight shoes that will not stress the feet with their heaviness
  • Soft and comfy insole composed of absorbent material

Shoe comfort should be the top priority. Shoes with padded collars and cushioned insoles are very comfy. If the shoes are too tight, and they rub them against the kids’ toes and heels, do not opt for these ones.

Once you find the right comfortable shoes, ensure you’ve got the right sizes. Shoes that are too big can slip away from kids’ feet and make the trip and fall without providing proper support. Too small shoes will cause blisters, discomfort and constricting. 

Lightweight shoes with suitable material are crucial for kids’ feet to breathe. Proper materials and construction will provide the needed support and keep the feet and toes snuggled without sweating and causing stinky kids’ feet

In Conclusion

Kids’ school shoes last around 6 months. This is because kids’ will wither outgrow them or tear them down since they wear them every day to school. They usually need one extra pair of shoes in case something happens to the first ones.

When buying these shoes always consider its fit, comfortability, and construction. Proper closure will secure the foot just right and the quality material will to the needed ventilation. 


  • Petra Moskatelo

    Petra is the main editor and writer here at Footmeter. She is passionate about helping people find the right solution. She holds a university Master's degree in pedagogy, and she knows a lot about children and learning.