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Things to Consider When Going Back to School as a Parent


Congratulations! You finally decided to go back to school and earn your degree. You’ve chosen a major, picked the school, and are ready to get started. However, there’s one thing that’s holding you back: you worry you won’t have enough time to be present as a parent. Going back to school as an adult can seem daunting, but when you have kids, it might be downright scary. In between the time commitment, homework, and your regular job, will there be enough time to be hands-on? Earning your degree as a parent might seem impossible, but thankfully, it’s not. Read to learn how you can be present for your family while earning your degree.

Start Now

There’s no time like the present, so stop thinking that it’s better to wait until your children are older. While that’s true in some cases, it’s usually better not to procrastinate and invest in yourself now. While your children always come first, you still need to focus on your needs as well. Once you enroll and know what your schedule is, you’ll be able to create a time management schedule that suits both your and your family’s needs.

Financial Planning

Unless you have scholarships, the cost of going to school can add up. That means you find a way to cover the cost of a degree while maintaining your same quality of life. Take a look at your budget and see where you can cut costs. In addition to eating at home more and buying generic brands, you also need to see where you can upcycle. If you have more than one child, you might be able to reuse toys, clothes, and shoes. In addition, you can also ask friends to swap gently used goods, which will save money too.

However, if you know you can’t afford tuition out of pocket, you do have a few options. You can again make monthly payments, or you can apply for student loans. In comparison to bank loans, private lenders can offer better loan terms overall and the interest also is usually less as well. It’s also important to note that private lenders can tailor your loan, so it matches your current financial situation. Be honest about how much you can afford each month, and only borrow enough to cover tuition.

Ask For Help

Even if you think you can do it all, you really can’t. And putting too much pressure on yourself to perform only leads to possibly not performing at all. Ask friends and family to step in and help out with household responsibilities. If you’re single, finding balance as a single parent may be challenging, you might need to hire a babysitter to help out on the weekends. That way, you can devote attention to your studies without feeling like your children are being ignored. If you’re married or in a partnership, let them know how they can help out. Whether it’s picking up the children from school, cooking dinner or letting you have some time to yourself, don’t be afraid to speak up.

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