The parents of a Nairobi school are up in arms over what they termed illegal charges, including examination fees.
The management of Kariobangi South Primary School has been accused of charging Sh800 examination fees, contrary to Ministry of Education regulations. They say the institution also demands tuition fees and money for computer lessons from the pupils. They say children are sent home when they fail to pay the charges.
One parent (whose name we will no reveal to protect his children) says his two children have been sent home on many occasions for tuition fees. Last week, the children were sent home for not paying Kenya Certificate of Primary Education examination fees and tuition charges.
He adds that when he went to the school to complain, he realised that many other parents had raised similar concerns on the issue.
“My children have been at home for some time now. They were sent home because they haven’t paid Sh800 each for the KCPE examinations,” he said.
The deputy head teacher, who only identified himself as Mr Mutungi, denied the allegations, saying pupils only pay Sh200 a term for continuous assessment tests and the school’s feeding programme.
The parent says he is aware that pupils should not be charged examination fees and accused the school administration of trying to exploit parents who are ignorant of the regulation.
“We know the school offers remedial classes because children who do not attend and those that have not paid leave school at 3pm while those who go for the classes leave at 6pm,” he says.
One of the Standard Eight pupils said they are told to pay Sh700 every month for tuition and pupils are sent home almost every day for failing to pay.
“Pupils are always sent away in the morning, at 8am, and only come back after paying,” she says.
The parent adds that he paid Sh7,950 for his two children to be admitted to the school. He claims that he was also asked to pay money for the school feeding programme for two even though one of his sons does not eat the food the school offers.
“I have a son who does not eat githeri but they insist that I have to pay for him,” he says.