Before you drop an eye-watering sum on a laptop or a tablet, get a clear understanding of the specs required (storage space, speed, operating system) then compare products online. Keep in mind that some schools get a bulk discount that includes a ‘choose your own device’ (CYOD) option. This may be cheaper than buying your own device, but be sure to look through the contract first, so you can be sure it’s truly the best deal.
A parting idea. Try putting a small amount of money aside each month for those extra expenses that inevitably crop up throughout the year, like new shoes (usually signalled by a ‘I can’t feel my toes’) or extracurricular activities. Your homework is to come up with an amount you’re comfortable with. Plus, anything leftover can roll into next year’s budget.