How to Feel ECSTATIC When Your Kid’s in 12th Grade

Who feels ecstatic when their kids are in 12th grade?

Parents (at all different income levels) who’ve laid the groundwork needed to get their 12th grade kid through college debt-free—and then directly into a career that kid excels at and loves afterward.

(I provide clear, step-by-step help with this in the book you see below.)

If it’s too late for ecstatic—I can at least help you feel super happy when your kid is in 12th grade.

If you’ve not yet laid any debt-free college groundwork, that’s OK.

I can move you and your friends quickly toward the goal of debt-free college and career for your 12th grade kids.

12th grade

Just take these 5 easy steps:

1. Get free, fast-paced, 10-minute video training from me right now, here.

There are 3 videos listed—watch only the one labeled “12th grade.”

2. Get help from me every Monday morning throughout this very important 12th grade year.

Subscribe to my very popular free weekly email newsletter here.

It’s free. You can unsubscribe at any time.

3. Learn here why you need to—quick—fill out the FAFSA form even if you’re rich.

Don’t leave college money on the table. Apply. I’ll help you.

4. Look at this process like it’s a glorious adventure, with unimaginable treasure at the end.

Because it is.

I’ll be your guide.

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Kid in College Next Fall? Grab This Free Money Now

If you’ll have a kid in college next fall, grab this free money right now.

That’s right. Eleven months before college starts.

Fill out the FAFSA financial aid form as soon as you can after October 1st, 2021—no matter your income level.

Do this, and you’ll put your kids first in line for all the free college money they have coming. fafsa

Download my very popular free FAFSA help here.

(Get it right now—you’ll feel ahead of the game and on top of this process, and that’s an energizing, exhilarating feeling.)

You’ll find even more debt-free college strategy in my book:

This book has 12 chapters specifically for parents of high school seniors.

It’s a reference book, so nobody reads the whole thing cover to cover. Pick out what you need to read in it using the fast-paced, 10-minute video instructions here.

Read just one chapter of LAUNCH each month during your child’s senior year of high school.

You’ll know every viable strategy for debt-free college at exactly the right time to implement it.

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Exciting FAFSA Changes Coming in 2022! I’m On It!

Exciting FAFSA changes are coming—in 2022!

I’ve been telling families for years—be 100% sure to fill out the FAFSA financial aid form every October 1st that there’s even a chance you’ll have a kid in college or trade school the following fall—because you don’t want to leave free college money on the table.

This is still true, and it still applies to you even if you’re rich.

Always fill out the FAFSA financial aid form, always at your earliest opportunity. This advice will not change.

Now you’re wondering, “How will these 2022 FAFSA changes affect my kids specifically?

If you’re feeling worried about FAFSA changes at all—just hold your horses.

I’m here to help my followers make a seamless, effortless leap between the old FAFSA system and the new one.

You’ll be right where you need to be if you’ll open my free weekly email newsletter every Monday morning. This is how I’ll keep you completely updated. Get your free subscription here, now. Don’t delay.

fafsa changes

Best news—when the time is right, I’ll be providing all the info you’ll need about FAFSA changes—all in one place.

For now, we’re all continuing to proceed through the clear directions in the first edition of my book, LAUNCH: How to Get Your Kids Through College Debt-Free and Into Jobs They Love Afterward. (Learn the fastest, easiest way to use this book based on your kid’s age at

When it’s time for us to shift to the new FAFSA system, an updated, brand-new second edition of LAUNCH will pull all the pieces together for parents of kids ages 12–26—and for the professionals who serve them.

That won’t happen for a while, though—so be sure you’re continuing to follow the instructions in the first edition of LAUNCH that’s currently available on Amazon.

This plan will make sure your family doesn’t fall behind in any way.

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Debt-Free College Training—Fast and Easy

Watch just one of the short, succinct video trainings below, and you’ll be on the fast track to getting the kids you love through college debt-free. 

debt-free college

If you’ve got a bright, capable middle schooler or high schooler headed for college—you’re probably wondering, “How are we going to pay for that?”

You’re especially thinking this if your kid isn’t a likely candidate for scholarships, you haven’t saved for college, and you make too much money to get government financial aid. (Or you think you do.)

You absolutely don’t want mountains of student loan debt for the kids you love.

Is there hope for getting your kids through college debt-free?


But you’ll need someone to guide you.

Your journey toward debt-free college starts right here, right now.

Watch just one of the short videos below, and you’ll get a jump-start on getting the kids you love through college debt-free, and into jobs they love afterward.

Watch, and then share with the friends who’ll be with you on this journey.

(These fun, informal videos were made in the studio where I record my podcasts, but they are not technically podcast episodes. You can find Episode 1 of my podcast here.)

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College Financing: Should Kids Just Do It Themselves?

Some parents try to save a little time, energy, and money by putting their kids in charge of planning their own college financing. 

“She’s nearly an adult—let her figure it out herself and live with the consequences,” some parents think.

But—is it actually a good idea to put kids in charge of college financing?

The purpose is to make parents consider whether it's a good idea for kids to handle their own college financing.

The answer? An emphatic no.

Parents, pleasedon’t put kids in charge of college financing.

No matter how busy you are, and no matter how bright and capable your son or daughter seems to be—please take charge of the college financing task yourself.

Figuring out college financing is too complex a task for kids.

Parents, though—you can do it!

Especially with the clear, step-by-step help I provide below.

Your teen’s brain is not yet ready for the task of college financing.

Studies show that before the age of 24, the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex of the adolescent brain is not developed sufficiently to be able to succeed at large-scale tasks requiring high-level evaluation of risk and preparation for the future. 

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How Filling Out the FAFSA Protects Your Kid

Filling out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) sounds like the best deal in the world. 


You as a parent spend just a little bit of time entering information into a clear, safe online form, and a kid you love magically gets put in line for free money to help pay for college.

Magically—in just minutes—your kid’s in line for nine separate federal student aid programs, over 600 state aid programs, and most of the college-based (institutional) aid available in the United States.

So why do some parents balk at filling out the FAFSA?

The biggest reason I hear from parents who aren’t filling out the FAFSA is, “We’re not gonna get anything anyway…”


Are you 100% sure about that?

Quick, read this article I’ve written on 7 Reasons to Fill Out the FAFSA Even If You’re Rich.

After you do, consider this very important reason that even the wealthiest families should be filling out the FAFSA:

Filling out the FAFSA protects your kid in the event of unforeseen family setbacks.

filling out the FAFSA

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Should You Fill Out the FAFSA on Your Phone?

Should you fill out the FAFSA on your phone?

On October 17th, 2018, I was invited to guest post on the blog of Certified Financial Planner™ Mike Branch of Focus Financial in Minneapolis. Mike has been an extraordinary mentor to me as I’ve plumbed the depths on how to get kids through college debt-free. You can find Mike at Focus Financial in Minneapolis, on the Approved Consultants tab on this website, or at one of the many FAFSA info sessions he presents in high school auditoriums each year. 

The guest post I wrote for Mike is below.

Are you parenting a student of any age who’ll be in college next fall? If so, one of your most important tasks this year will be to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as soon after October 1st as possible. This applies to every student and every parent—no exceptions.

Are you convinced that for you, filling out the FAFSA will be a waste of time—because you make far too much money to qualify for any college aid? Check out this article on 7 Reasons to Fill Out FAFSA Even if You’re Rich.

And then get out your smartphone.

As of October 1st, 2018, you can fill out the FAFSA on your phone.

For years, students and parents filling out the FAFSA were required to complete the form using desktop computers. In 2018, though, a new, mobile-friendly version of FAFSA was released.

Here, 8 things you’ll need to know before you fill out the FAFSA on your phone.

1. It’s a little easier to avoid overwhelm when you fill out the FAFSA on your phone, because you see only one question per screen.

2. Families can start filling out the form on one device, and finish it on another.

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Manage All Your Kids’ College Planning—Mostly By Yourself

If you’re concerned that you’re currently LATE to college planning, read this article now.

college planning

College planning can feel like being lost in a jungle. And sadly, your kid’s high school guidance counselor (nowadays more properly called a “school counselor,”) can’t help much with hacking through the underbrush. Oh, he or she would love to, but budget cuts have slashed the amount of time counselors get to spend with college bound students, in some cases down to just eight minutes per year.

And your child, smart as he is, isn’t in any position to handle the complexity of college planning either. The stakes are high, both financially and career wise, and his brain won’t be fully developed until age 24.

And the internet? You sure don’t want to depend on the internet for college planning advice.

Don’t rely on the internet for college planning advice.

It’ll take you years to sift through everything the internet has to say about college planning. The bits and pieces of info and conflicting messages you hear from online resources will drive you insane. Plus, a huge percentage of what’s currently on the internet regarding college planning is sorely out of date, since President Barack Obama drastically changed US college financing on September 13th, 2015, and most of the world has not yet caught up.

You need a resource that will give you fast, accurate, specific instructions that the internet can’t provide. (I’ll provide a resource for you, below.)

7 things to do when you feel lost in the jungle of college planning

1. Don’t put off college planning because you feel overwhelmed.

I understand that you feel overwhelmed by the college planning process. Every parent does. But if you wait until your kid’s sophomore or junior year of high school to get started on college planning, 75% of the strategies you could have used to get your kid through college debt-free will be gone. Starting early is the best strategy, even if you can’t save a penny.

(If you’re worried that you’re currently late to college planning, read this article now.)

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What Happens to Student Loan Debt After You Die?

No parent wants to consider this — but what happens if one of your children runs up $80,000 in student loan debt, and then perishes in a car accident or dies of cancer? Will your grief be compounded by having to make years (decades!) of student loan payments, until the student loan obligation is paid in full? Every parent needs to be clear on the answer to this question: “What happens to student loan debt after you die?”

The answer is scary, but — there’s great hope for those who can plan ahead just a bit.

What happens to student loan debt after you die?

First, the good news, then the bad news.

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Can Parents Call the College Financial Aid Office?

If you’re parenting a teen, there’s a good chance that sometime during the winter of your child’s senior year of high school, you’re going to be flipping through documents called “financial aid award letters.”

You’ll have a “financial aid award letter” from every college that’s accepted your child—as long as you’ve filled out the FAFSA financial aid form (which you should absolutely do, even if you’re rich).

When you’re sifting through three or four financial aid award letters, how do you compare them?

financial aid

This article is going to help you with that important task. As a starting point, let’s look very briefly at what financial aid award letters are, and what the problem tends to be with them.

Financial aid award letters tell you how much money you’ll be expected to pay for the education at each college. 

Sounds great, right? This is the point where you get to know the actual price tag for each school. This is where you find out which college is offering your daughter the best deal.

The problem is that financial aid award letters are notoriously difficult to interpret and compare. 

Continue Reading »

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