When my wife and I started to have children, we never thought that we would end up as homeschoolers. This year we are just that. We have a first grader and a kindergartener and we are educating them at home. I do not want to get into a long discussion about the pros and cons of homeschool v private school v government school. The bottom line is that we believe this is best for our children at this point in time and in the future, circumstances might change that will cause us to reconcider and possibly even choose one of the other options. Today, I just want to talk about the financial aspect of this decision.
Here are the ways that we save money by homeschooling:
- Clothes. We have been able to avoid the cost of clothes brought on by a dress code (some private schools) and by peer pressure. Our kids go to school in their play clothes and we save some money this way. I think the greatest area of savings is in shoes.
- Transportation. We do not have to drive our children to and from school. Getting to school is as easy as walking downstairs.
- Food. We do not have to buy the school lunch and we even save money on packing a lunch since lunch at home does not require a lunch box, sandwich bags, beverage container or even the proverbial “brown bag”.
- Tuition. This is the obvious cost savings over private school. Public school would not require us to pay tuition, obviously.
- Fundraising. All schools, public and private, require students to raise money for one thing or another. We do not have to deal with selling candy bars, magazine subscriptions or participating in any other ways to bring in money to the school.
- School supplies. Our kids share school supplies and many of the things that they use are items that we already have around the house.
- Vacations and travel. Because we are not bound by the school year, we are able to travel at “off-peak” times of the year. We save a lot of money by booking flights on week days or staying in hotels on school nights.
We did not chose to homeschool because it was the cheapest option. We chose it because in light of all of the circumstances, it is the best educational choice for our children. I am thankful to live in a country where we have the freedom to educate our children at home. While there is a financial component to the decision to homeschool, I certainly believe that it is important to invest in education and hope to have the money in the future to spend on the best education possible for my kids.
Article by Stew
Photo by tiffanywashko