DEPED has recently announced a shocking decision, classes have been moved again on October 5, 2020. This has added more confusion to an already confusing school year for all of us here in the Philippines, especially when it comes to our budget for their education.
The goal of this post is to give you (co-parents, my OFW clients & friends) the best advice to maximize your budget for this school year and not waste anything because we know we all need liquidity today, more than ever:
- Be Realistic & Pragmatic – In short, assess your finances well and think about what you can truly afford. A realistic approach for this year is the best thing you can develop, especially with all the uncertainty in the economy today. For example, if you feel that you don’t have security within your work, maybe you can consider downgrading your child’s school this year to a more affordable one (just this year). This will help you keep your child educated and save up some cash for emergencies. In any case, after this pandemic is over, things may go back to normal and you can switch your child again to his old school. – Kung ano po ung kaya ngayon, yun po muna ang gawin natin. Wala naman po masama kung magtitipid tayo ng kaunting ngayon taon.
- Don’t be Blinded by Gadgets – Based on our experience, online education does not need very expensive gadgets. According to teach.org, a basic i3 processor, with 2gb RAM speed and a 2mbps internet connection speed is enough. In short, we don’t need to panic and buy top of the line gadgets right now, which may not maximized after the pandemic. Some of the parents that I know were worrying about what laptop or tablet their child will use, this should not be the case. Just buy what is practical now and that is enough for you child’s online class. – Hindi po masyadong maapektuhan ang pagaaral ng bata kung gagamit sila ng mga gadgets na “midlevel” – ang importante po ay may nagagamit sila at natutukan natin sila sa pagaaral sa bahay.
- Communicate with your Kids/Family Members about the Financial Situation – Establishing open communication with your family, especially with your kids, about the uncertain outlook of our economy is very important. We have to communicate to them that we have to prepare for the worst and that we have maximize our family’s budget. Remember, financial matter should be a financial matter. Open communication will help them develop empathy and give you support with your financial decisions this year. – Ang usapan pera ay hindi dapat iniiwasan sa pamilya, dahil dito nagmumula ang maraming problema at maling pananaw sa pera.
- Ask for Justification from your Child’s School – Some schools today are scrambling on what to do during this pandemic, and some of them may try to come up with confusing tution fee schemes and payment terms. To avoid overpaying for anything, it is okay to communicate with your child’s school and ask them to justify how they came up with the tuition fee for this year. You may even give suggestions to the school on how to maximize the tuition for this year. Trust me, schools don’t want to lose clients and they will be paying attention to the parents’ suggestions. – Karapatan natin malaman kung paano nacompute ang tuition ng mga anak natin. Wag tayo mahiya magtanong dahil importante and bawat sentimo sa atin ngayon.
- Sacrifice – Stretch Everything Out – Yes, this year is already hard, the best thing to do is to look at what you can cut out in the budget. The simplest thing you can do is list down what your costs are for your child’s education and really look long and hard on what you can sacrifice. For example, if you have a tutor for your child, maybe you can reduce the days that your child is being tutored, this may save you 1k or more monthly on this; Another one, if your child’s school offers payment terms, that would be the smartest thing to avail right now, you don’t need to pay in full because we don’t know what’s going to happen the next few months, what if DepEd decides to shut school down again this year? As we said, the key is to have more cash with you for the whole year. Don’t pay for full for anything right now. You main goal is to stretch out your money until this pandemic is over. – Hindi natin alam mangyayari ngayon taon, ang pinaka importante ay may hawak tayong cash kapag kinailagnan natin.
As a summary, dear parents and our OFW friends, we know you’re stressed with your budget, and being able to pay attention and become smart when it comes to our spending will help you feel more secured financially this year. We know that we don’t want our kids to be rusty or dull and stop schooling this year but it also shouldn’t break our budget. I hope that these tips can help you out. – Importante ang pag aaral kaya kailangan natin ito ituloy pero hindi natin kailangan ubusin ang pera natin para dito.
I’m Chris Cervantes, Self-made Millionaire, founder of Cardinal Buoy Finances, OFW Champion & Wealth Mentor, until my next post. If you need any help creating a road map for your finances, we have practical coaching programs and webinars for you to enroll in. You can send us a message here on our page for more information. Thanks