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Necessary measures should be taken to stop school fees increase

This term is going to be hectic and rough for parents. School fees has been raised beyond the means of many parents. Prices of textbooks have also been increased.

Head teachers have devised ways to get extra cash from parents through programmes that do not necessarily concern students.

Last year in third term, teachers went on strike for a whole month but parents still paid the full school fees for last term yet students were in school for only a month and a couple of weeks.

Head teachers should have carried forward part of last term’s fees to cater for this term.

The Government should also intervene and take necessary precautions to prevent fee increase.

{Kadeka Flavian, via email}

As students commence their first term, parents have raised concern over high fees charged by public secondary schools.

Many secondary schools have increased their fees in contravention of guidelines issued by the Ministry of Education on the same.

Last year, the ministry issued fees guidelines for all categories of public schools but defiant principals have secretly included what was ruled out.

The ministry should take stringent actions against school heads found culpable of this because high fees will bar students from accessing education.

It should send inspectorates to all corners of the country to scrutinise the fees being charged in order to ensure it’s not against the stipulated amount.

Increasing fees is tantamount to infringing on children’s right to access education.

{Enock Mukila, Kisii}

Public schools have increased fee this term yet the Government has not taken any action.

Head teachers claim Government subsidy for free education is less and cannot supplement all the programmes in school due to high living standards.

{Odhiambo Kelly, Maseno}

Although I support parents’ association in opposing school fees increase, I totally disagree with their intention to stop Form One selection over the same.

While Kenya National Association of Parents Secretary General Musau Ndunda did well to remind President Kenyatta to live up to the promise he made last year; that the fees that was not used during the five-week teachers’ strike would be carried forward, he pitifully failed when he vowed to stop Form One selection over fees.

Why do we always involve students in every conflict involving education? Aren’t we aware that their poor performance in last year’s KCPE exams is a testimony that they already suffered a lot during the teachers’ strike?

Mr Ndunda should know that it is possible to solve the fees conflict without necessarily making learners suffer.

Going to court and getting orders can help recover the fees that parents may have lost but can never recover the learning time the students may have lost.

It is on record that both the Education CS and his PS have warned school heads against disregarding the fees guidelines. Ours is therefore to trust that they will use the powers bestowed on them for the benefit of learners and parents. It is unnecessary to stop Form One selection.

{Samson Nyasimi, Kericho}

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