If you’re a parent on a tight budget, you may be wondering how to afford private school for your children. Choosing the ideal education for your children is no easy task. How can you, as a parent, know which scholastic environment will be the most ultimately beneficial to your child? Private Christian schools have so much to offer, but the price tag often seems daunting. According to a 2006 National Association of Independent Schools study, 32 percent of the general public would prefer to send their children to independent schools if cost and distance from home were not barriers. Here’s how to make a private school education attainable on any budget:
How to afford private school? Start saving now.
Even if your children are very young, it’s never too early to start saving for the future. Start a special saving account just for future expenses, or open an education savings account (ESA). This investment program allows parents to withdraw money tax free as long as the account’s beneficiary uses the money to pay for qualified education expenses. ESAs, which are available through most banks, can be used toward kindergarten through 12th grade tuition, as well as college. However, the account can only accept $2,000 in contributions a year. The earlier you get started, the better.
Figure out your family’s priorities.
Give your finances a good, hard look and see where your priorities lie. Keep in mind, it’s not advisable to go into debt or dip into retirement savings to pay for private school. After a thorough examination, determine if you truly want to invest in a private school education for your children. If so, see where you’re able to trim the fat in your budget. If private school is a priority, be willing to cut out non-essentials.
Cut back on unnecessary expenses.
Speaking of non-essentials, choosing private school for your children may mean less fancy vacations, eating out, and home remodeling projects. Keep careful track of where your dollars are going each month and see where you can reel in non-essential spending. This will involve making some sacrifices, but many families find the tradeoff to be well worth it in the long run.
Explore financial aid.
Many private schools offer financial aid and variable tuition programs based on need. Sit down with a financial advisor at your school of choice to explore what options may be available to your family. A private school education may be more attainable than you think.
If you’re considering enrolling your child in private school, contact us today! We’d love to speak with you.