I’ve decided to do a series on home schooling as I research the various options and work through our thoughts as a family. A lot of people have mentioned that they are also debating the issue and I hope that these blog posts will be helpful.
SPOILER ALERT: Education is expensive.
This week I’ve begun doing research in earnest, and one of the obvious starting points was to compare the costs of home schooling versus traditional schooling. I didn’t bother asking about private schooling because what I’d heard was that one year of high school cost the same as two years of my university degree. That’s just crazy.
I asked my Facebook friends what they would pay for an average school year, and the consensus was around R20,000 for a good government school. That’s excluding the extras like civvies day, fundraising, field trips and the like.
Even at a preschool level, I have realised that schools have “hidden” costs. School photos, market day, concert tickets, concert costumes, dress up day, spring hat day, and so on.
The curriculum I’m leaning toward costs about R23,000 for grade one. Slightly higher than the average mentioned above, but when it’s time for Emmy to do grade one, it would only cost us R3,000 for the extra workbooks. So we would be paying R26,000 for two years of grade one, or R13,000 per child which is well below the average. The rest of their schooling costs would be similar – almost a “two for the price of one” deal.
Obviously, this does not include extra mural costs which I haven’t even begun looking into – that’s a subject for another blog post.
Also, we would not have to buy school uniforms or school shoes. The girls could wear fairy wings and tiaras to school – for that matter, so could I. It wouldn’t matter if their hair was unruly – as it usually is – or if their fingernails were multicoloured – also a strong possibility.
We have not yet decided to go the home schooling route, but from a purely financial point of view it is extremely appealing.
What do you pay, on average, for a year of schooling?