I am the parent of three children, two of whom are attending pre-school. It disturbs me that their fees are rising yet again next year - by a significant 20 per cent.
I tried to look for another pre-school that was near my home, and found out that those that had not raised their fees were planning to do so.
It was reported in September that three of five major pre-school chains - which are required to keep fees affordable in return for regular government grants - will increase their prices next year ("3 major pre-school chains raising fees next year"; Sept 27).
This comes after the median monthly fee for full-day childcare rose in a year by $80 - the biggest increment in at least eight years - to reach $830 last year.
The other two pre-school chains are not raising their fees because their current fees have hit the maximum allowed for anchor operators.
What is the Ministry of Social and Family Development doing to stem the fee increases?
More families have parents who are both working and have no choice but to enrol their children in pre-schools. Moreover, a cheaper school may not be an option as there may be no vacancies, or the family may live too far away.
The article ("It costs twice as much to feed your baby today"; Monday) reported that the average price of baby milk has more than doubled in the past decade.
Clearly, the cost of raising children has risen exponentially over the years.
While the Government may be powerless to stop milk powder prices from rising, it should step in where it can exert control, such as childcare costs, especially since it aims to get Singaporeans to have more children.
This article was first published on Dec 17, 2014.
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