spinoff: How important is education to you for your child?

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Posted 1/10/2013 by jodster70 in NSBR Board
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PeaNut 452,927
January 2010
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Loc: Mass

Posted: 1/11/2013 6:13:23 AM

All 3 of our children got Master's degrees, but one got his in an unconventional way. He had to learn how hard it was to make a living without a degree of any kind first. And he saw his siblings make better decisions.

This...^^^ my oldest blew his chance for college, he wasn't mature enough and has struggled trying to make a living, etc.. when he saw his sister get her degree and saw how fast that four years went by,, he very much regrets not taking the opportunity we gave him.. now at 30 he has a job (Comcast technician) but it's not what he wants to do.. and he is considering returning to school (he actually did go back about 3 years ago and then the Comcast full time job came up and he needed to take it.. ) just this week he says he is strongly considering going to school part time.. which I think is good.. tho it's not a guarantee that he will get a better job... the way things are right now.. but he broadens his chances..
Unless the student has a trade that he excels /really likes.. I don't know how they will make it... it's very concerning to me

Proudly Canadian

PeaNut 43,061
July 2002
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Posted: 1/11/2013 6:17:32 AM
In our family, education is not a choice. It *will* happen at all levels and all children will attend, and graduate from a post-secondary institution. There is just no question of doing anything else and anything less than that would not be acceptable. It doesn't matter which post-secondary institution (tech institute or college or university), but every member of the family will attend.

However, attendance was not a stickler and my parents often called me in for mental health days and allowed me to miss weeks of school to do theatre or go on vacation or whatever needed to happen. The day to day didn't matter, it's only the end result that mattered. The militant attendance I read about here sounds like a nightmare because it leaves no flexibility for actual life.

Also, extracurriculars were not decided by parents, no parent in my family (to my knowledge) had any input about which extras we did or whether or not we attended. They would drive if necessary, but there was no discussion about which ones to take or if the child was allowed to do it. That (along with homework and other school related activities) were left solely to the student after around grade 6. So there would not have been a discussing such as the math vs basketball, the child in our family would have made the decision alone (perhaps with input if asked).

To be honest, the level of parental input I read about here at peas (and to be honest from some families with young kids) really surprises me. It's so much more than what I experienced. I'm not sure I could have handled constantly parental input (monitoring homework/activities, being in the classroom, going on fieldtrips, etc.) in the manner I read about here. It's interesting though.

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 75,215
March 2003
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Loc: massachusetts

Posted: 1/11/2013 6:25:14 AM
Education is extremely important in my family. Probably because both DH and I agree that post high school education is where we learned to think and solve problems. It made such a huge difference in both our lives.

I think you can certainly pick up all that on your own, but we both benefited from the structure of college. So we're expecting and planning for it for the kids.


PeaNut 217,769
August 2005
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Loc: NY

Posted: 1/11/2013 7:03:12 AM
Of course education is important. My grade school kids do well but I don't think past that. I make sure homework is done and quiz them on spelling, etc. I don't put a lot of pressure on them, I let them be kids, I don't force them to read or learn their tables, etc when they don't want to and they know their stuff on their own, without me nagging them.

I never think in terms of them earning a lot of money when they get older, I just hope they find careers they LOVE and have interests to make them happy, like I do.


PeaNut 211,963
June 2005
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Loc: SW Virginia

Posted: 1/11/2013 7:06:26 AM
Very important. With that said, we also insisted that he learn a "trade" as well, and he agreed. He is a Jr. in college studying Economics but he can also fix your car too!

Bring me that horizon!

PeaNut 239,162
December 2005
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Loc: The final frontier

Posted: 1/11/2013 7:25:30 AM
Education as it relates to the future career choices they make? Completely irrelevant. I don't define success in life by chosen profession. However, education as a valuable end in and of itself is pretty close to the top of my list of important things. Not going to college will not be an option for my kids. I expect them to become adept critical thinkers. I expect them to be life long learners. They are still young and I don't know what hurdles we'll face in the next few years but so far, that's a path they've taken of their own initiative.

Dalai Mama
La Pea Boheme

PeaNut 49,641
September 2002
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Posted: 1/11/2013 7:36:41 AM
A higher education has never been presented to my children as being optional. I don't care whether they become engineers or garbage collectors, further education is never a bad thing. I gives them options.

Jo Mama


Gotta kick at the darkness 'til it bleeds daylight. - Bruce Cockburn

The knack of flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. - Douglas Adams

Really Red
Pea-ceful and Hap-pea

PeaNut 24,951
November 2001
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Posted: 1/11/2013 7:49:32 AM
Hah. Since it was I who started the other thread, I can easily say that education is paramount to me.

That doesn't mean that sports and friends and music, etc., etc., don't all have a place in life, but the best education you will get will make a difference in your life.

Ivy League does not equal the best education. The best education is what is right for your child. For some that is Ivy League, post graduate and on and for others, it is just the right college.


When one door of happiness closes, another opens; But often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.
Helen Keller

Lost and Found in Pea-land

PeaNut 138,098
March 2004
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Loc: NC but wishing I was somewhere else

Posted: 1/11/2013 7:51:13 AM
We think education is the best "gift" we can give our kids, which is why we continue to homeschool them. We want all four of our kids to go to college.

Typical Liberal

PeaNut 221,236
August 2005
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Loc: Houston

Posted: 1/11/2013 7:57:00 AM
We don't make a big deal out of it at our house because it's simply what we do. I'm a teacher and DH is a former teacher and the education process is the centerpiece of our daily lives. We go to school, we do our best, we go on to college and probably graduate school. Beyond that, we are lifelong learners. There's no pressure or heavy expectations; that's just how our family rolls.


PeaNut 574,604
December 2012
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Posted: 1/11/2013 9:00:55 AM

To be honest, I would prefer that he not go to an Ivy League school or private college because of the cost involved.
When my dd was applying, she found that private colleges were often cheaper than public universities because of the amount of aid given. Not just financial aid, but merit scholarships and GRANTS. (Not loans, GRANTS.) They were also much more generous when it came to accepting transfer credits than public universities. So the private colleges were either cheaper or the same cost as public universities with the added benefit of much smaller classes and greater opportunities (esp for study abroad). I would also note that the savings may be more apparent than real as, for example, the flagship public university in our state routintely graduates kids in 5 or 6 years due to over-enrolllment, while the private colleges guaranteed graduation in 4 years.

So I would not automatically discount private colleges solely on cost because your assumptions may be off base.

chatty chatty

PeaNut 120,522
December 2003
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Loc: San Jose, CA

Posted: 1/11/2013 9:10:44 AM
We are in the middle of this right now. Our middle child is in 7th grade and so so smart. The local HS will not cut it for his needs. Private schools are $19K per year here with all expenses. We could do it if we ate nothing but then our third child should have that opportunity as well. There is a charter 7-12 school we are going to look into for him next year but I found out that 200 students didn't make the cut last year....

I know not all children are college bound. Our oldest barely made it out of jr high and then scraped by in HS (with us pushing and checking all the way). The one year of jr college was a disaster and waste of money. She has been working at a decently paying job and doing well at that job for 20 months. I know whe will get more education one day but she does not have the drive or need for it right now.


it rhymes with banana

mom to a 21 yo dd, 14 yo ds, and 11 yo ds and a scrapper for 13 years


PeaNut 142,266
April 2004
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Loc: Texas

Posted: 1/11/2013 9:45:06 AM
Eucation is extremely important in our family. My son is a student at Notre Dame. The school is a great fit for him academically and culturally.

My daughter is a senior in high school and she is still deciding where she wants to go to college.

I think a college degree is more than a means to an end. I agree with Sarah that I want my kids to learn to be critical thinkers regardless of what they do to earn a living. I also want them to ejoy the whole college experience-the football games, the late night study sessions, the professors that challenge you to think about something in a completely different light, etc.


Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 43,893
July 2002
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Posted: 1/11/2013 11:51:18 AM
Education is important to me and DH however it is not the end all and be all of life.

I know plenty of successful people who do not have a college degree. My kids know they can do what they want. But we will strongly advocate towards college.

My kids know that grades are important and they are supposed to work to achieve the best that they can. They know that they are expected to complete their homework. However they also know that we expect them to be well rounded human beings and that rest and relaxation are a critical part of that. So we do not push them to do each and every academic achievement available. They would be overwhelmed there are so many. We are happy with a solid B+ and a well rested, unstressed child than a A+ from an over worked, stressed, basket case of a child. But they push themselves that last little bit and DD often gets herself over stressed and we have to enforce some relaxation or recreation time. Right now she has a 90 in one class and she is freaking out because a 90 is a B+. DH and I keep telling her to calm down it's a great grade. LOL.

Out kids know that we expect them to go to college. However they also know that they can (after 18 ) choose a plan B to support themselves and they can do whatever they want but we will not necessarily help to pay for it. They will not be allowed to sit at home and play all day without supporting themselves but they will always have a home here. They know that no matter what plan B career they choose if they ask I can find an associates degree at the local college that would be helpful/related and I will strongly suggest that they try one at their own pace but they wont be forced.

There are many paths to success in life and my children know that I FIRMLY (from my dad ) believe that each persons success is defined by them alone and not by others (including parents ) but they also know they are expected to find a way to eventually be independent. (In other words they had better include food, clothing and shelter in their plan for success other than that anything goes. ) Wether that's college or trade school or buying their own business or whatever, they can go to it with our full support. We mostly want them to be content with their lives, then we will consider them successful.

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