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Five Money Myths that Trip Up Homeschoolers By Carol Topp

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By Carol Topp,

Myth # 4: Homeschooling is Expensive:


Spending my days with people I love and who love me …priceless.

Tim Drake, a former public school teacher and a staff writer with the National Catholic Register, points to the experience of his local Minnesota home-schooling group, Home Educated Youth. These 220 families spend between $300 and $1,000 per family each year, according to a survey of the group. Private schools cost from $3,000-$10,000 year.  That’s expensive!

Money tip:  Make up a homeschool budget.  Include books, field trips, classes, magazine subscriptions.

Truth:  Homeschooling is time consuming.

My brother, an economist, would say homeschooling has an  “opportunity cost.”  “Opportunity cost” is the cost of passing up a choice when making a decision. I calculated my opportunity cost based on a job offer I was given of $35/hour.  That’s $72,800 a year. I’ve been homeschooling for 9 years; that’s $655,200!  Yikes!  That’s what I’ve given up.

But is it worth it? Is homeschooling rewarding my family enough to make up for the loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars of income? As the Mastercard commercial would put it, “Time with your children, one-on-one tutoring, living by my own schedule, spending my days with people I love and who love me…priceless.”

My brother might tell me that my children are costing me $72,800 a year. My response would have to be that at that price, homeschooling is a bargain.

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