High cost of education

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Some parents lie and cheat to help their children get admitted to top-ranked universities. In what is now known as the 2019 College Admissions Scandal, the rich and famous paid bribes and had exams altered, among other tactics, to ensure their children were admitted to some of the most prestigious schools in the United States.

Thirty-three well-heeled parents were recently charged, along with others who participated in this fraud.

The American parents wanted what was best for their children. What was best was a strong education. Canadians also want what is best for their children. Similar to the values in the United States, that includes a strong post-secondary education.

In March the CBC reported a similar scandal is ‘very unlikely’ in Canada due in part to our admissions process. However, challenges still exist. One of the biggest is how to afford the high cost of post-secondary education.

A four-year university degree can cost $100,000. Community college is less expensive because most programs are less than four years. Costs may be reduced if students remain living at home. But education is still expensive.

According to a 2018 RBC Report “The Cost of Credentials – The shifting burden of post-secondary tuition in Canada”, tuition costs have gone up for the past 28 years in a row. Since 1990 the cost of tuition at Canadian universities has nearly tripled in inflation adjusted terms.

Very few families can afford to pay outright for an ongoing education. Most have to save, and that takes a little planning.

Education can provide a strong foundation for life. I encourage families to develop a financial strategy to assist their children.

When your children are young, start a regular monthly savings plan. Every month have funds automatically transferred from your bank account into your child’s education fund.

If you invest in a Registered Education Savings Plan the government will give you a grant that is added to your RESP every year.

Education is an important family value. Education is expensive. Plan now for your children’s ongoing education.