Graham Gorton, chairman of the Independent Schools Association, said that many mums and dads believe they are "failing as parents" if they do not provide the computer games, TVs and pricey gifts.
As well as keeping them occupied in the home, Mr Gorton says that many feel pressured to enrol the kids in "every conceivable club or after school activity that is available", often at the expense of valuable family time.
His comments reflect those of a teachers' leader who claimed recently that middle-class parents who spoil their kids are responsible for a rise in bad behaviour amongst youngsters.
Speaking at the association's annual conference, Mr Gorton said: "Over recent decades we seem to have created a 'must have' culture amongst our young people.
"Many see that they may be perceived to be failing as parents if they do not ensure that their children have the latest gadgets and electronic devices along with their peers."
"That then isolates them within the home, and then they're surprised when their child isn't coming to school ready to learn."
But since most parents, middle-class or not, are both working and return home stressed and tired, is it any wonder that the kids are holed up in front of the TV or video game?
What do you think? Are parents to blame for the "must have" culture amongst Britain's kids?