Pupils in class. Photo/FILE
The biggest headache for most parents with children in learning institutions every new year is where to get fees that can enable them to take their children to school without hitches. This is not a new phenomenon yet annually, parents and guardians run from pillar to post asking where they can get money to pay for their children to learn.
The trouble with this approach is that it ends up consuming much of parents’ valuable time – which they should have used to do something else. Investment gurus always advise that parents need to plan for the education of their children adequately so as not to suffer any setback.
Experience has shown that education can make a lasting difference in children’s lives. Indeed, they say that education is not just good for children, it is good for nations. Investing in education is not just the right thing to do, it is smart economics.
It is for this reason why parents need to have a view of various investment options available early enough in order not to distract their children’s education. Principally, the financial market in Kenya comprises commercial banks, non-bank financial institutions, mortgage companies, forex bureaus, development finance institutions, pension schemes, savings and credit co-operative societies (Saccos), the insurance sector and the stock market.
These institutions provide solutions that parents need to have a look at early enough so as to start remitting money just to be assured that their children will learn without any hindrance.
Insurance firms, for instance, have different investment plans that guarantee funds for parents or guardians for the provision of their children’s education whether they (parents or guardians) are disabled, alive or not as long as they start paying when the children are still young.
However, banks too, have saving investments that parents and guardians can use so that when the time comes, their children can go to school and colleges easily. The only difference with commercial banks is that they may require huge funds to be invested at once.
Saccos, too, provide loans that can guarantee parents the amount of fee they require at the time of need as long as they save them and repay promptly. Education can put people on a path towards good health, empowerment and employment.
It can help to build more peaceful societies. And the benefits of girls’ education extend to their own children who are often healthier and more educated because their mothers went to school.
Assurance of a child’s education to a parent is like providing him or her what he or she will use for rest of their lives. Studies show that, on average, each additional year of education boosts a person’s income by 10 per cent and increases a country’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 18 per cent. Some researchers estimate that if every child learned to read, around 170 million fewer people would live in poverty.
It is therefore important for parents to know that educating a child is not difficult as long as they plan for it adequately to avoid last-minute ditch, which often gets them unaware.
Parents and guardians need to know that education remains one of the most important duties of any government: It is a public responsibility to provide access to high-quality education for everyone.
Therefore, it is not late for parents to start planning for the education of their child without being embarrassed last minute by politicians, who would always promise heaven and do nothing.
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