Investing in a Child’s Education: Why is it All-Important

Every now and then, we are faced with the challenge of making decisions, some of which are relatively insignificant while others have a major influence on our lives and the lives of those around us. The optimal balance of pros and cons is vital in order to make a decision. This tradeoff becomes more difficult, when the decisions are about matters in one’s priority list. One of the most difficult scenarios, frontal to parents is making a reasonable decision about the education of their children. The level of education desired, specifically, is of particular concern for parents in terms of locality, affordability, relevance and quality of education. 

In Pakistani schools the education system is generally divided into four tiers, i.e., kindergarten, primary, middle and high school. This is followed by college/university education, imparting specific skills into students, aligned with their choice of career/discipline. All levels of education play a role in career development of children influencing their values, attitudes and choices. Along with other variables, the choice of subject and institute has resultant impact in determining overall success.
The choice of primary school is important as it builds the foundation for learning in later years. Major attributes, and developing and sharpening of basic and essential skills are all important at this stage. It is of utmost importance to initiate the skill set in children that will pave way for future initiatives; hence, primary school systems have a great role to play. The decisions about education have long-term impact as well as financial burden on parents. The financial intermediaries also offer lucrative investment plans for parents, over ten years of schooling and even extending them to college and university. Banks present a number of saving plans, over different periods, with attractive markups. Parents, thus, have better opportunities and choices to opt for in lieu of their choice and financial burden. These financial plans also mitigate the impact of burden through such schemes.
In face of the constraints aforementioned, the outcome of such a decision has immense impact on a child’s upbringing. It is suggested that in-depth information must be collected by parents before arriving at a decision. The word-of-mouth does hold good in helping form an opinion about educational institutions. The stress on choice of institution is important due to its long term implications – rather lifelong impact. The child’s aptitude is one factor that the parent must prioritize before actually spending on the child’s education. Success in achieving a certain set of goals will be determined by the child’s aptitude, particularly at the level of high school and later. Aptitude is then supported by the type of education offered, intellect and hard work of the individual that ascertain success. 
Parents’ investment in a child’s education is critical in the upbringing of the child, pertaining to mental, moral and social contexts. Primary years lay focus on the physical and mental-moral capabilities. This is annexed with other variables like confidence building, speech efficiency, social conduct, body language and self esteem. The next levels, i.e., middle level schooling includes other complex dynamics of the persona, strengthening interpersonal skills, attitudes and concepts. High school and undergraduate education further enhances capacity building and career path, aligning their capabilities to achieve goals of interest in the very near future. The intermediate and undergraduate level of education enhances and polishes intellectual requirement for real-time workplace expectations. This determines the long term standing of a child, preparing him/her for future endeavors. The struggle of first twelve years complemented by the undergraduate scorings, in terms of academic position – work as a predisposition to achieving long run standoffs. 
There is a strong relationship of interdependence between children and parents. All children are born with different intellectual, physical and learning capabilities, despite the fact that they are raised in the same environment at home. The overt expressions are hence closely observed by parents, who understand this set of learning and wisdom specific to each child. Similarly, family history, religion, social norms, status and environment have a key role to play in determining individual learning capability. Parents are in the best position to choose an environmental setting most favorable and welcoming, to make learning effective. The institutes should focus upon actions, reactions, perceptions and response generation for inducing an effective learning strategy. The choice of an educational institute highly optimizes choice, preferences, level of understanding, memory, adaptability, listening skills, speaking power and written expressions of a child.
In all of this, the most influential and crucial pivot is parents’ role. They are the entity that has the defining impact on this decision, pertaining to financial resourcing, conveyance, provisions and tertiary support throughout life. They have to have a strong probe into finding means for supporting the right choice for their child. Their investment of time, money and moral support must pay off – making it the most accomplished decision of their lives. The level of accomplishment or success standard varies on a temporal and spatial ground. Parents have to resolve and reconcile the various notions on success outcomes of a child, in their individual capacities. This will lay basis on drawing comparisons between the desired, the expected and the real level of achievement of their child. The innate conflict of expectations, investment and outcomes is real, which altogether determines parents’ satisfaction with the education system and their child’s performance in real life. 
Generally speaking, the quality of education instilled in young minds is an asset for the future: both for parents and the child, and for the society. This decision should be taken wisely and timely, with immediate feedback to ensure efficiency of the system. Educational institutes rely greatly on input from parents’ experience, which keeps the system going. It is mandatory to invest time in the child’s education, which can reveal prospects for improving and establishing a better functioning and productive system. HH

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