Continuing my series (see previous two posts), here is the question posed to Rabbi Shmuel Feurst about priorities between tuition for younger children and weddings/post-marriage support for married children.
Question--Can a parent say, "I am supporting children in kollel. Therefore, I can't pay full tuition"?
Answer--One's first priority is to support one's children who are still at home, attending elementary school or high school. Married children are a second-level priority. When making shidduchim, a person may have to juggle funds, and hopefully, the tuition committee will have compassion for the parents, but that does not change the priorities. By halacha guidelines, Torah education of one's young children comes first, and afterwards, support for married children.
I am pleased by this answer. But does anyone want to take a stab at what "juggl[ing] funds" entails?
But ultimately, I'm not sure that financial issues play out so cleanly in reality. Evidence suggests that massive amounts of money are spent on weddings (engagement to post-wedding) and significant debt is incurred during this time period. Certainly, that debt eventually catches up and the schools are going to get a lesser piece of the pie because much of the pie has been already been eaten, unless I am completely off base and it is only the last marriage that gets debt financed?
There are a lot of things that could be discussed here, but that is what my loyal commentors are bound to do. So, I'm signing off for now.
Next up: Tuition vs. Retirement (the last of the four questions in the Jewish Observer Tuition Dilemma issue).