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Bolstering My Children's Education

Once we started homeschooling our kids, I noticed that they started to struggle more with concentration. In addition to making it hard to get through a lesson, they also lost interest in some of their favorite subjects--presumably because we weren't teaching them as well as their favorite teachers. Fortunately, a friend of ours told us about some great homeschooling educational tools that might be able to help. We invested in some new textbooks and a few updated visual aids, and it made a tremendous difference. Read this blog to find out how to bolster your child's education, even if you teach them at home.

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Bolstering My Children's Education

Covering The Cost Of Private School Tuition Without Breaking Your Budget

by Fred Peters

You want your child to have the best education possible, and private schools can definitely provide that, but there's the small matter of covering the cost of tuition. Whether you have one child or more that you plan on sending to a private school, tuition fees can seem daunting if you don't plan ahead for them. Don't avoid sending your child to a great school just because of tuition costs; use these tips to help cover the cost of tuition without breaking your family budget.

Investigate financial aid options

Many private schools offer scholarships and financial aid to families who can't afford the full cost of tuition. Even if you don't think your child will qualify (if you think your income level is too high), apply anyway. You may be surprised; the requirements qualifying for aid can vary. 

Even if you are hoping to send your child to a parochial private school such as a Catholic school, you may be eligible for assistance from some national scholarship and education voucher programs. These programs help families offset the cost of tuition to help them afford private school education.

Ask about your payment options

Many parents don't realize that the cost of private school doesn't have to be prohibitive. Even without financial aid, tuition paid in monthly installments may be much more manageable than you realize. Ask the school if it would be possible to make installment payments on your child's tuition, and pay as much as possible on the first payment to make your future payments even more manageable. Making a few small changes to your household budget can help you work this monthly payment into your regular budget without too much strain.

Look for discounts

Ask the school if they offer a discount for paying tuition early, in full, or in cash. Even a discount of five to ten percent can make a big difference, so this could be a good option if you have enough money in your savings account to pay for one or more session's worth of tuition. 

Some schools also offer discounts if you enroll more than one student. Some private schools also offer parents 'credits' toward tuition if the parents put in a certain number of volunteer hours at the school. This can be a great way to be more involved in your child's education and save money at the same time.

Consider putting your taxes to use

You may want to consider opening a Coverdell ESA for each child. This savings account allows you to invest up to $2000 per student each year into the account for the purpose of paying for expenses related to education. This includes elementary, middle and high school education costs, not just college. These investment accounts grow tax-free and can be used until the student turns 30 years old.

One thing to keep in mind when budgeting for private school costs is the fact that uniforms and supplies may not be included in the tuition. Accounts like the Coverdell ones can help you offset those costs, too, even if you have no trouble covering tuition out of your regular budget.

If you receive a tax refund every year, put it aside to pay for private school tuition costs. You can put it in your child's Coverdell ESA, or use it to prepay the next year's tuition. Remember to ask about discounts for paying in advance or in cash.

A good education is the foundation for your child's future. Don't let fears that you can't afford private school tuition keep your child from getting the education you want to provide. Plan ahead and use these tips to help you manage your child's education costs easily. For more information, see a company such as Saint Thomas Academy.

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