Assessing your life stage – kids going to school

Standard Chartered Bank

Children can grow up so fast in the blink of an eye. Your precious little ones which you only brought home from the hospital has grown up and are running around quipping after cartoon phrases and asking you questions which you have no idea where they learnt from.

Children grow up fast, and in this modern day and age, all the more faster considering the larger exposure to different media platforms.

GOING TO SCHOOL SOON

These days parents are already thinking ahead of which school they want to send their children to and some may think it is premature to do so when your child is only one-year-old.

It may actually be a good thing to plan early to help ensure you get a spot in the school of your choice.

Parents have the choice to send their children to private or government schools, both of which have equally high standards of education in Brunei.

For parents wishing to send their children to private schools, early homework on finding out how much monthly school fees are, will help you to decide if you can afford to send them to your school of choice. Parents should have a list in case their preferred options are not realistically within the budget.

Visit schools you are interested in, to see if you are happy with the facilities, environment and curriculum. Remember that extra curricular activities are important for your child’s development and finding out what activities the school offers is important as well.

Ask friends or family whose children are in the school about their opinion and get extra feedback from there which can help you decide.

Do not be tempted to enrol your child in an expensive private school if you are not sure of being able to meet future school fee payments. It may be disruptive for your child to be transferred to another school later in case you are unable to meet school fee payments.

Adjusting to a new environment and making new friends may be quite traumatic for some children.

Apart from school fees, do bear in mind other needs like cost of uniforms, textbooks, and stationery. All these will add to the cost of education for your child so if you are already worried about handling school fees, you may have to think realistically about what is affordable and necessary as opposed to what is desirable. While you can still save by buying secondhand textbooks, it may not be enough to depend on these options alone to keep your child in the school you desire.

GOING TO SCHOOL LATER

Even though your children are still young, their dreams and aspirations may be larger than yours. From lawyers to doctors to engineers, your child’s dreams for their own future may have no limit.

Tertiary education is by no means cheap and while you may hope that your child will be awarded a scholarship, be prepared to fund your child’s education entirely on your own. Start setting aside funds now for this purpose.

You may wish to look into a regular savings plan which will help to invest your savings, hence making your money work harder for you. Most banks have education savings plans that you can invest in. At Standard Chartered, regular savings plans are linked with investments thereby offering potentially higher returns on your savings than normal savings accounts.

If your child is awarded a scholarship, allocate the money saved for his/her start up in life. It can go towards purchasing a new car or even to deposit on a house.

Having some savings allocated for them will no doubt go a long way to setting them up for a successful start in life. It is never too early to plan ahead for your child’s potential aspirations.

SENSIBILITY BREEDS SENSIBILITY

Teach your children from an early age the importance and value of money.

By being conscientious about spending and being diligent on saving, your child will learn to appreciate money.

Encourage them to put aside spare change and help them to feel important about their saving by bringing them to the bank to deposit their savings.

By seeing their money grow, they too will feel a sense of achievement at how well they manage their savings.

Remind them that their savings are for important things.

Encourage discussions with your children on whether it is necessary to have a new toy and reason with them if it can instead be a treat for when they do well in tests or exams or for a special occasion.

Give your children the right start to help them plan, build and protect their future.

This article is for general information purposes only and while the information in it is believed to be reliable, it has not been independently verified by us. You are advised to exercise your own independent judgement with the contents in this article.