A lady I work with is paying for her daughter to go through an elite Catholic private school in the city. The other day at lunch she was telling me how stressed her and her husband were about now discussing paying for post secondary education.
Apparently the daughter announced that she was looking more closely at an expensive university in our nations capital, tens of thousands of kilometers away. The parents assumed she’d always stay close to home and live with them until university was finished, moving was never in the question.
I tried to remind her that she could still potentially get scholarships (she’s only in grade 11) or, worst case, get a student loan. Mom was appalled I had even suggested a loan. When I asked why, she said it was her ”duty” as a mother to provide 100% for her child, all education included. She would work full-time until she was 80 if it meant that her kid finished any and all post secondary debt-free. This, after paying $12,000 per year for the last 12 years for the private school.
While I agree that yes, it is a parents responsibility to provide for their child to the best of their abilities I am of the opinion that private school is a luxury and if my child choose to pursue a post secondary education beyond what my husband and I could help her with, then she’d be on her own to figure out the difference.
Private School Considerations
Our daughter is only two. We’re not yet thinking too much about where she will attend primary education, but I still think about whether or not we will enroll her in private school or public school. If we enroll her in private school there are many things to consider:
- Arguable that she would get a better education and have a much more ”fun” time while in school since private schools have opportunities that public schools may not. However, both my husband and I, along with many of our friends who attended pubic school, had a very positive experience and many of us are quite successful. I have to wonder if, with our daughter growing up in an environment catered to nurturing her education, she would gain that much more in educational experience?
- There’s the $12,000++ tuition every year for private school that, while a tax deduction for us parents, in my opinion may be much better used invested for post secondary opportunities (FYI: we already save monthly in a registered investment savings for post secondary for her). We could use the $1,000/month in many beneficial ways for our daughter in terms of extracurricular activities, travel, educational experiences as a family rather than for one member of the family.
- Could be argued that if she is successful in private school, she may have more scholarship opportunities, combined with the arguable better education, may not need any savings from mom and dad.
- Both private schools in the city are pretty far from where we would ever live and we’d need to deal with the expense of getting her to school everyday (gas, bridge tolls etc) in today’s dollars, based on our current location, would cost about $100 more per month in travel.
I’m leaning more towards public school and allocating a large portion of ”would be private school money” to other things for kiddo.
We couldn’t afford private school as well as many extracurricular activities. Both my husband and I will be very involved with her schooling, there’s no doubt she will be successful wherever she goes but we need to do what’s best for the family. If we have more than one child we certainly couldn’t afford two kids in private school, which is a whole other issue.
Did you/will your kids go to private school? Was it ”worth” it?