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Old 05-28-2010, 09:52 AM
 
Location: West Cobb County, GA (Atlanta metro)
9,190 posts, read 29,614,501 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lastminutemom View Post
We drive very old cars, live in a very old house, shop rarely, and vacation infrequently. Because we use public elementary school, we were older and further along in our careers when we were (and are) paying for private schools.
Bingo. Lastminutemom has hit nail on the head.

I've known people who sent their kids to private school, and here's what it boils down to: If you like to have the 5BR/5BA brick home on 2 acres with two new cars in the driveway all the time, nice vacations each year, and both parents have to work full time in order to maintain that type of lifestyle, then you'll have a hard time being able to handle a good private school education for your kids. If you're willing to live well below the "cap" of what you always think you can afford, then you'll save more than enough to be able to do it.

In other words, if you CAN afford a $350,000 house, then buy a $250k house instead. Get a gently used $25k car instead of a new $40k SUV. Go to Chattanooga for a long weekend instead of Europe for two weeks. etc. Off the wall examples, but you get the idea. Decide all of the things you have/do in your life, what you normally afford, then deduct 25% of what those cost, and "pretend" you only make enough to afford the new lower budget. Save the rest. It will go toward private schools, and you may even have some left over.

That is the only way those I've known in the past, even those who were what I would call "well off", were able to easily afford good private schools for their kids without feeling the hurt.
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Old 05-28-2010, 11:05 AM
 
2,677 posts, read 5,079,773 times
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The alternative of public school would mean that $19,000/yr if invested would turn into $116k in just 5 years or $289k in 10 years. Thats a nice nest egg for paying for college or paying off your house.

Of course if you feel private school is more important then its a moot point as long as your already saving for your retirement and things and can also pay private school, then go for it.
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Old 05-28-2010, 12:21 PM
 
281 posts, read 519,842 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noah View Post
The alternative of public school would mean that $19,000/yr if invested would turn into $116k in just 5 years or $289k in 10 years. Thats a nice nest egg for paying for college or paying off your house.

Of course if you feel private school is more important then its a moot point as long as your already saving for your retirement and things and can also pay private school, then go for it.
What are you investing in to get returns like that?
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Old 05-28-2010, 12:25 PM
 
2,677 posts, read 5,079,773 times
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Nothing exotic. Simple 8% return. A good growth stock mutual fund should do the trick. Many do better over the long term but for a simple, conservative example 8% is good.

But lets assume only a 6% return:

In 5 years you'd have $110k and in 10 years $259k.

Quote:
Originally Posted by elvez View Post
What are you investing in to get returns like that?
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Old 05-28-2010, 03:03 PM
 
188 posts, read 512,004 times
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To the OP:

I wanted to point something out for your child, who sounds very gifted. Fulton County offers "accelerated" classes in math and language arts at the elementary school level. In addition to spending one day a week in the gifted program, my daughter is also pulled out of the classroom every day for 2.5 hours to do language arts/reading work that is one full grade level above her peers. I seriously considered private schools, but none of the ones within reasonable commuting distance from us (we're in Johns Creek) could offer her this type of scenario. Just thought I'd mention it since you're also Fulton County.

But to address your real question...My parents sent my brother and me to private school our whole lives. We never traveled, never got new clothes or cars, never ate out, didn't have cable, never got new electronics, etc. My parents are in their 60s now, and tell me that even though I loved where I went to school, they regret sending me there. It was just too stressful for them.
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Old 05-28-2010, 03:36 PM
 
Location: South Fulton
97 posts, read 199,756 times
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Thanks everyone! Great posts and insight.

I do have to admit that I did think really hard about that $19 - 20K per year that we could save for 5 - 6 years. That would be a NICE hunk of change that they could use for college. I would feel very satisfied as a parent knowing that we had put that much aside for our kids.

Heck, if we avoided private school the whole way through that would be.... lemme get the calculator: $260K. They could pretty much go to any school they wanted. Hmmm..

Tresninas, thank you for that insight about the gifted classes. I didn't know they did anything special at the elementary level. I'll check with the local school and see what they offer. You've also given me a very real picture of what life would be like to do private all the way through. Wow... Doesn't sound like a lot of fun.

We will probably have to keep them in private at least for a couple of years only because my youngest has an October birthdate and to go to public means she'd have to repeat pre-K and that, to me, is just craziness. Just for a birthday that's 1 month off. Wonder if the school would make an exception...
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Old 05-28-2010, 06:58 PM
 
76 posts, read 137,994 times
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For my own child and I have 1 DD (for the record) a private school is what she needs (smaller classes, et al) and what we desired for her -- it is probably easier since we have an only. I actually did something a little different, we are definitely not rich, well off, etc -- older cars, very modest house......but I went to work at the school and in return got a small salary and a decent (50%) tuition discount. Not a solution for everyone I do understand -- but DH and I desired DD to attend a private school and since I gave up my career and became at SAHM when we had DD in 2003 (also a very conscious, planned for decision on our part) I had been out of the work force for 5 years -- when the school advertised the need for a teacher's aide (the same year DD entered Kindy) I applied and got the job and the tuition discount. Did it help I had a Bachelor's degree? Yes. Is it what I want to do for the rest of my life......NO......but it is the scarifice I have made for that private school education and it made that education more affordable for our family.

Last year I got offered a lead teacher positon and took it. For me and the education goals for my family -- it is worth it -- for now -- and that may change in the future but it works for us for now. I want the best possible education for my DD that we can get at the best price. We will do whatever we have to do......and no we don't attend one of the "top tier" (Westminister, et al) schools in ATL (don't I wish but not doable for us) but we do attend a private school here in Cobb County that has a great reputation. It isn't the best of the best but it is definitely the best that we can afford if that makes sense? And our DD has thrived.......really thrived in a way I don't think would be possible in our local public school.

Last edited by MyLittlePrincessK; 05-28-2010 at 07:09 PM..
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Old 05-29-2010, 02:08 AM
 
Location: South Fulton
97 posts, read 199,756 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyLittlePrincessK View Post
For my own child and I have 1 DD (for the record) a private school is what she needs (smaller classes, et al) and what we desired for her -- it is probably easier since we have an only.
Thanks so much for your reply. Can you give me a little more insight on this one? One of my desires was also to have smaller class sizes, particularly for elementary school and I've heard some horrible things about class sizes lately in public schools. I am hoping that changes by the time we get there. Why do you feel that the small classes were necessary for your daughter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MyLittlePrincessK View Post
but I went to work at the school and in return got a small salary and a decent (50%) tuition discount.
Good idea! :-) I need to look into that. I'm sure the hubby wouldn't be thrilled about it, especially since I'm very close to getting my Master's. Can't imagine him being happy about using that to go into education (which is not what I'm going to school for at all).

Quote:
Originally Posted by MyLittlePrincessK View Post
Is it what I want to do for the rest of my life......NO......but it is the scarifice I have made for that private school education and it made that education more affordable for our family.
Kudos to you all for doing what you felt was best for your baby. :-))))

Quote:
Originally Posted by MyLittlePrincessK View Post
We will do whatever we have to do......and no we don't attend one of the "top tier" (Westminister, et al) schools in ATL (don't I wish but not doable for us) but we do attend a private school here in Cobb County that has a great reputation.
I recently drove by Woodward and Lovett. People have told me to NOT go by those schools because I would fall in love with the campus and if I really couldn't afford it, then I should avoid the areas.

I've gotta say that I was personally, completely turned off by them. I mean, sure the buildings are beautiful but I'm thinking to myself, "Who the heck needs all of that to educate a Kindergartner or 3rd grader"? Looked overwhelming to me when I look at our 2 little children.

Now, if they have some special programs (i.e., for a child with special needs that public just can't offer, then it makes sense) but I just don't think it's worth $17K/year to educate a 2nd grade child. Out of control!


Quote:
Originally Posted by MyLittlePrincessK View Post
It isn't the best of the best but it is definitely the best that we can afford if that makes sense? And our DD has thrived.......really thrived in a way I don't think would be possible in our local public school.
When you say "thrive", what do you mean? I used the same word with the hubby and he didn't understand what I meant by that and for some reason I couldn't explain to him how a child could do well in 1 environment vs. another. He just wasn't getting it.
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Old 05-29-2010, 09:31 AM
 
2,677 posts, read 5,079,773 times
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Its probably hard to base decisions/opinions based on what you hear on the news for a large school system in general as opposed to specifics of the school your kids would actually attend.

But how do you know your husband isn't right. Some kids do better in one environment then the other, but isn't it possible the public environment would be best. What if the teacher is better there and the methods lead your kids to thrive. Just something to think about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlias View Post
I've heard some horrible things about class sizes lately in public schools. I am hoping that changes by the time we get there. Why do you feel that the small classes were necessary for your daughter?


I used the same word with the hubby and he didn't understand what I meant by that and for some reason I couldn't explain to him how a child could do well in 1 environment vs. another. He just wasn't getting it.
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Old 05-29-2010, 09:40 AM
 
2,677 posts, read 5,079,773 times
Reputation: 915
It would end up being much more then $260k unless you put it in your closet and earned no interest. Earning a puny 6% interest your $260k would actually be $392k after the 13 years you mentioned.


You can use this calculator to play with different scenarios.
http://www.planningtips.com/cgi-bin/savings.pl

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlias View Post
Heck, if we avoided private school the whole way through that would be.... lemme get the calculator: $260K.
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