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Kaya Drive: Stay on top of school expenses

school expenses
Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash

By: Natasha Archary 

 

As the year comes to an end, parents are dealing with overdue school expenses and fees. This Wednesday on Kaya Drive with Sizwe Dhlomo, parents share their struggles with trying to stay on top of their kids’ school costs.

While most are preparing for the festive season, many families are planning stationery budgets, accommodating registration fees for new grades or a change of school. It’s around this time of the year that schools’ release their stationery lists, uniform requirements and fees schedule for the next academic year.

It is a stressful time of year for parents with many worried about how they are going to afford another year of fees and other school expenses.

Whether children are in private or public schools, expenses weigh up and as Keneiloe Huma mentioned, miss a month and it comes back to bite you next month.

Tips to manage your child’s school expenses:

The numbers adding up may seem daunting but here a few ways to stay on top of school costs.

  • Put aside a portion of your salary for your child’s educational needs

Once you know how much the academic year is going to cost, you can plan your budget. This will help you stay within your expense range and not tap into your child’s fees.

  • Set up a payment schedule with the school

Speak to the school to see if they can accommodate a payment plan that will work with your financial situation.

  • Start saving early

Set up a savings account for your child as early as possible. Many people are not aware of the advantages of compound interest. Savings accounts build over a period of time, alleviating financial worry for parents.

  • Plan stationery shopping for the following year a few months before the start of the year

Most schools send out school lists around November which gives parents enough time to complete their stationery shopping. Work through the list either weekly or over the next 2 months which will prevent forking out a huge chunk of your salary at once.

  • Buy any uniform items that are required during the year

If uniform items need to be replaced, do so as and when your child has lost or ruined a uniform item. Instead of waiting for the end of the year to replace items. Some school uniform shops also offer a lay-buy option for parents to settle their bill over 3-months.

  • Automate payments

There may be months that hit you financially out of the blue, to prevent school expenses being affected, setting up an automatic debit order for fees may help.

  • Apply for bursaries and scholarships

Check with the school about bursaries or scholarships that are available. Most will have a certain academic requirement to qualify but the scholarships and bursaries account for a big percentage of monthly expenses.

 

Kaya Drive listeners share how they manage school expenses:

 

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