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Mr. JumpStart and family.

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Recent posts by Mr. JumpStart

Fort Lauderdale Trip Report Part 2: Sort of.

Earlier this week, my plan was pretty simple. I published part 1 of my Fort Lauderdale trip report Tues, and would write part 2 later in the week.  My daughter Jill and I were driving home from school Wed, when I heard the phrase “school shooting near Fort Lauderdale,” on the radio. Since then, I’ve […]

ocean view westin fort lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale Trip Report: Long Weekend Feb 2018.

A long weekend in Fort Lauderdale was just what we needed to escape the cold and gloom of Feb.  After school on Thursday we did some scrambling, dropped the dog at a friend’s house, and dropped JumpStart Jill at work, before driving 3 hours south to Raleigh. On a snow day, 3 weeks ago, I […]

Should you let your kid struggle with money in college?

Should I let my kid struggle with money in college?

There are several ways to phrase this question. Should I let my kid be poor in college? Should I let my kid suffer in college? Should I let my kid struggle with money in college? College kids need to learn more than the content from college classes.  Young adults need to become independent adults, including […]

pay for college

What If There Isn’t a College Fund?

In Will Ferrell’s movie “The House”, Will’s character learned that his 401k didn’t actually contain $401,000, and instead of disappointing his daughter, he was forced to open an illegal casino.  After a month, he netted a quarter million for college.  I never understood why his goal wasn’t 50 grand for tuition for the first year, […]

Popular Posts

Buy a beach house on a teacher salary? We did it.

Is it possible for a teacher to buy a beach house?  My wife and I are both teacher,s and in May of 2013 we bought a townhouse in Myrtle Beach.  People are often surprised when I talk about our beach house.  It sounds like that would be an unreasonable expense, or require a huge inheritance, […]

understanding the cost of college with jenga blocks

Understanding the cost of college with Jenga blocks.

A major part of my job as a physics teacher is to increase student skills at interpreting data and graphs.  The green JumpStart logo is actually a graph of cost by school year, to send my 2 kids to college.  It is 7 years long and there is a spike in the middle of the […]

Calendar instead of To-do List

“Instead of to-do lists, schedule tasks on your calendar.” I read this advice several weeks ago, and must apologize to the blogger, because I can’t remember where I read it. To-do lists have been a strategy of mine as long as I can remember.  I decided to give the strategy a try, and used excel to […]

Are Dual and AP classes worth it?

Are Dual and AP Classes Worth it?

Options for high school classes have skyrocketed over the years, and now feature dual enrollment and AP classes.  In our school system, the price for dual enrollment credits has bounced around over the years.  AP test fees are lower, but 94$ for a test the student might fail could be considered a gamble.  I’ve spent […]

Meet the

JumpStart Family


Mrs. JS and I teach for a public school system in Virginia.  Our son JS Jack is a freshman in college, and our daughter JS Jill is a sophomore at my high school.

We are another family facing the daunting task of paying for college and raising financially mature kids.  The green JumpStart logo is actually a graph representing our personal 7 year obstacle.  Each large green block represents a year of college expenses.  That middle terrifying block is the year both kids will be in college.

College info can be confusing, generic, and unhelpful. Today’s typical college grads are crippled by high student loan payments, credit card debt, poor credit, bad financial habits, and they lack established accounts.

My blog tells the story of our family’s journey. We’re striving to give the kids a JumpStart along the college path, and intend to create graduates with low debt, high credit scores, established financial accounts, and a generous stash of travel points.

After a JumpStart, students graduate with a financial framework, money IQ, and freedom entering adult life. They leave college with strong credit that opens doors, points that give an opportunity for cheap travel, and are financially ready to begin building wealth.

I’m Mr. JumpStart, a career physics teacher, coach, landlord to one townhouse, and a travel hacker. I'll give honest details about our decisions, successes, and missteps.  Follow along as I document our kids on their JumpStart from Scratch.


JumpStart Jack