Parents still paying undocumented school fees despite Ministry's warning

Parents are still required to pay extra charges, some totalling Sh10,000, in violation of fee guidelines provided by the Education ministry.

A parent whose child is set to join a national school next year said the fees was capped at Sh53,554. She complained of extra levies supposedly for construction of a dormitory and motivation of teachers.

To avoid documentation that may attract sanctions, some schools have avoided listing the disputed items on formal fee structures and instead the new charges are communicated verbally but payment is mandatory.

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Paul Kurgat is one such troubled parent. His daughter has been admitted to a national school, which has brought the family joy.

But the joy has been damped by the exorbitant levies.

Mr Kurgat, apart from paying the normal stipulated Sh 53,554, is paying extra charges to cater for infrastructure, boost teachers' morale and support other projects in school.

Parents are grappling to raise extra levies, some which are undocumented and are announced in school during parents’ general meeting, while others are attached to fees structures.

“Most of the extra levies charged are said to support infrastructure projects, motivate teachers even when they earn a salary,” Kurgat said.

At a national school in West Pokot, parents have to part with additional charges besides Sh53,554 as stipulated by the Government.

Remedial classes

In the documents seen by The Standard, parents at St Theresa’s Tar Tar Girls are required to pay Sh1,000 for remedial classes per student from Form Two to Four. The charges are compulsory for every student.

An extra Sh5,000 per student is charged towards construction of a new dormitory.

“Due to the congestion in the dormitory, the school intends to construct a big dormitory as discussed during our AGM through payment of Sh5,000 per student in January 2019 to facilitate organising for a fundraiser,” the school circular read.

Extra Sh100 is also charged to cater for Upendo kitty and 'Sh40 for opening Mass' to be submitted on opening days’. The school further notes that the contribution would be done on termly basis.

Other extra charges include Sh 4,150 for replenishing uniform - the charges, as stated in the circular, will only cater for the Form Three students.

“Tracksuit is available in school at a cost of Sh1,600. This is compulsory for Forms Three and Four, 2019 to make them desist from stealing from each other,” the circular read.

Some schools are, however, crafty and avoid documentation. They only make verbal announcements to parents to contribute money to boost motivation among teachers.

“I'm required to part with Sh1,200 per term for my daughter at school in Ziwa, Uasin Gishu County, for remedial teaching and motivation of teachers,” Joseph Maina, a parent said.

Speaking during the launch of Rift Valley extra county Form One selection last week, teachers noted that high enrollment in schools strain existing resources noting that funding from the government was little.

However, Rift Valley regional Education director Mary Gaturu said the Government had allocated Sh16 billion for infrastructure, warning that charging extra levies would be treated as corruption.

She said schools can raise extra money to support infrastructure through CDF and fundraisers.

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school feesMinistry of Education