Private schools flouting govt directives

Kathmandu, May 4       

Despite the government’s directive, private schools in the Kathmandu Valley have been fleecing parents by charging fees under various titles.

Monitoring teams formed by the government and student unions visited four schools today and found all of them violating the Institutional School Fee Fixation Directives 2016.

The teams found that Khumaltar-based Ullens School was charging Grade I students Rs 28,000 as tuition fee while Patan Dhoka-based Rato Bangala School was charging Rs 25,000 as tuition fee for the same level.

Interestingly, both schools had taken consent from parents and had submitted their fee structures to the District Education Office.

UP Lamichhane, spokesperson, Nepal Student Union, said the schools were found charging exorbitant fees. “On top of that, Rato Bangala has not been providing scholarship to poor and meritorious students,” he said.

Lamichhane quoting Uttam Thapa, administration chief of Rato Bangala School, said the officials of the District Education Office, Lalitpur were using the schools’ vehicles for their personal purpose and sometimes also sought other kinds of support.

The monitoring teams also found that Lalitpur-based Premier International School charged Rs 50,000 and Rs 23,000 as admission and monthly fees respectively for Grade I, while Kathmandu-based Apex School charged Rs 15,000 as annual fee. Lamichhane accused the government monitoring team of staging a farce in the name of monitoring.

Suprabhat Bhandari, president, Guardians Association of Nepal, who is also in the government monitoring team, said the government had failed to take action against schools fleecing parents.

Subash Bhandari of GAN complained that parents were suffering due to lack of a mechanism to monitor schools regularly. Most of the schools in the A category have been charging Grade I students above Rs 20,000 as monthly fee.

Earlier this morning, the Ministry of Education urged the student unions to cancel their school monitoring programme and sit for talks.

Dr Hari Lamsal, spokesperson, MoE, said, “ Monitoring schools without coordination with the government would be meaningless.

Therefore, we have asked them to coordinate with the

government.” However, Lamichhane said they would continue monitoring schools.