Outcry over Solusi High fees

Parents with children learning at Solusi Adventist High have raised an outcry after the school reportedly demanded that they pay an extra US$100 towards fees.

They also accused the school of not clearing children whose parents were paying fees in Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS).

Examination classes opened last week while non-examination classes are set to open on September 6.

Parents claimed Solusi had effected a 33 percent school fees hike and now required an additional US$100 for every child, which does not appear on the school’s fee quotation sheet while authorities also failed to give a convincing explanation.

The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education said it had not approved any fee hike and urged parents to report this matter at their district education office.

“No school fees went up by 33 percent. It’s the number of days that increased, not the approved fees per day. Did they agree as parents and the school? They must report to the district office,” said the education ministry’s Director of Communications and Advocacy, Taungana Ndoro.

Parents who spoke to CITE said the school was not divulging what the extra payment was for nor was it granting a payment plan.

“We have a problem with Solusi Secondary School, parents are forced to pay an unlawful US$100 per child, which does not appear on the school fees quotation provided by the school,” said the parents who requested anonymity for fear of any reprisals.

“The situation is chaotic and the desperate parents are ill-treated by the school officials. Most parents can’t afford the unlawful US$100 payment and on top of that the fees went up by 33. 3 percent for this term but the school and School Development Committee (SDC) chairman refuses to grant parents a payment plan.”

When the parents inquired on the School’s WhatsApp communication group, they alleged the SDC chairperson, Dumisani Ncube, “blocked the parents from commenting on the group and changed the function to allow only administrators to comment.”

“Parents’ complaints and requests on the school WhatsApp group fell on deaf ears while the SDC Chairman insisted on the payment of the US$100.

“When parents pay what’s on the quotation form in RTGS they are denied clearance and their children will be denied access to board the bus or deny them entry to school,” claimed the parents.

As school fees payments are underway, school authorities sent parents another communique on their WhatsApp group informing them that only cleared learners will depart from the Bulawayo City Hall at 8 am on September 5, 2021.

“So parents who pay in RTGS only means their children will not be cleared,” decried the parents.

Contacted for comment, the Solusi SDC chairperson declined to comment and referred questions to the school.

“I am not the rightful person, contact the school,” he said.

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