The centre asked 500 parents in Bangkok and its surroundings about increasing living costs and education spending.
According to the survey, 71 per cent of parents are worried or have financial liquidity problems regarding education spending. Some parents have even gone for loans.
With schools reopening for on-site studies, expenses have increased as new uniforms need to be purchased while there are also expenses for travelling and activities.
The centre expects spending will total THB26.9 billion this semester, with schools scheduled to reopen on May 17.
Moreover, prices of consumer products and energy are increasing while employment and household income are still both weak.
Most parents who are worried or have liquidity problems are people with low to medium incomes. They are likely to borrow money from more than one account or source, the centre noted.
Parents are also worried about the Covid-19 situation despite students being vaccinated, but the number of daily new cases is still high.
Some 56.8 per cent of parents are not confident because their children will have to study on-site amid a fast spreading Covid-19.
However, 43 per cent are confident (mostly parents whose children are aged over 10) because their children are fully vaccinated and they trust the safety measures employed by schools.
Separately, 41.8 per cent of parents said they used their savings and got a loan via credit card, relatives or friends to pay for their children’s education, while 30 per cent used only their savings. However, 27.8 per cent of parents did not have enough savings and were forced to get a loan.
In this situation, 82.6 per cent want the government to come out with support measures to help with education or other expenses.
Tuition fees (not including international schools) have increased by 0.7 per cent on average year-on-year, or THB22.7 billion in total, the centre said. This figure is still lower than 2020, with THB22.9 billion.
It increased from the previous year because schools are reopening this year for on-site study, so tuition fees are back to the normal level.
Some students might head back to tutorial schools but parents of others are worried about the Covid-19 situation. So they might reduce or cut tutorial help altogether until the Covid-19 situation and the economy fare better.
The centre summarised that the increasing expenses this year might not reflect a good business direction. Parents might have to decrease or cut some daily expenses while finding additional sources of income, it concluded.
Published : May 11, 2022
By : THE NATION