Taking Notes: Eye on Education – Will You be Able to Send Your Children to University?

Taking Notes: Eye on Education – Will You be Able to Send Your Children to University?

This column will focus directly on educational issues that affect post-secondary students. It will address a wide range of topics. Students are encouraged to submit suggestions and educational topics they are concerned about, along with any personal experiences with courses or university situations they feel other students should know about.

AU students may already have a good idea of what our degree will end up costing, but have you ever wondered what it will cost you to send your own child to university? The Government of Canada has provided a helpful calculator at: http://www.hrdc.gc.ca/hrib/learnlit/cesg/013/001_e.shtml. This calculation uses the government’s current Registered Educational Savings Plan combined with the Canada Education Savings Grant to give you an estimate of how much a parent would need to save every month to fund their child’s future post secondary education. I used the expected birth date of my first grandchild next year to test it out. Here was the result:

The child will be 18 in 2022. In that year she/he will need $58,200 for four years of university if living at home, $87,000 if living away. In order to fund the whole amount of $87,000, the child’s parents will need to save $195.34 every month from now until 2022. This will total $42,000. The government’s CESG program will contribute $7200, and interest will account for $30,998.

If we assume the child will be living at home, the figures are as follows: Parents must save $138.51 a month for a total of $29,919 in the RESP. The government will contribute a CESG grant of $5984 and interest will add $22,301, for a total of $58,200.

As a middle-class wage earner, I live from paycheck to paycheck just to survive. I know that there is no way I could manage to sock away $138.51 a month, let alone $195.34. And keep in mind this is just for an undergrad degree. What if I have a second child? Try doubling those amounts!