On Campus

Low-income parents struggle to save for education

Last week Erin blogged about a new federal government report on group scholarship funds and registered education savings plans. I have not been able to locate the report on the Human Resources and Social Development Canada website thus far. This Canwest News Service story provides additional details on the study:

While low-income parents have high hopes for their children’s post-secondary education and recognize the need to save early to pay for it, many are having a hard time doing that, according to a study.

The parents who were surveyed for Human Resources and Social Development Canada primarily cite lack of money as an issue for not saving for education but they also aren’t always aware of financing options.

On the surface parents seem to be aware of various savings plans and grants to finance their child’s higher education, but few can accurately describe them, says an Ekos Research Associates study released recently by the government.

Among the means of financing post-secondary education Registered Education Savings Plans were often recognized, with 83 per cent of parents saying they had heard of them. But only half could describe what RESPs were accurately while some confused them with other products such as Canada Education Savings Grants. Only one-third of low-income parents had heard about CESGs and just half of those could describe them accurately. Four in 10 low-income parents were saving for post-secondary education in some fashion, according to the survey, two-thirds of them choosing an RESP.

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