Parents cry foul over school fees hike

Saturday January 2 2016

Kenya National Parents Association

Kenya National Parents Association Secretary-General Musau Ndunda addressing journalists in Nairobi on January 2, 2015. PHOTO | ROBERT NGUGI | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

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Parents are now seeking President Uhuru Kenyatta’s intervention on school fees guidelines.

They claim education officials have failed to ensure the set guidelines are implemented.

Kenya National association of Parents (KNPA) Secretary-General Musau Ndunda said the government should not give new guidelines but instead focus on implementing those issued last year.

“We are writing to President Kenyatta through the Cabinet Secretary for Education Fred Matiang’i so that we can meet him and tell him the truth. And if he invites us now, we are ready to go to State House,” said Mr Ndunda at a press conference of Saturday.

He said the cost of education should come down, noting that even the gazetted fee structure is still high.

He insisted that those ignoring the guidelines are engaging in a crime and should be prosecuted.

Mr Ndunda also wants the Teachers Service Commission (TSC) to be put under the Education ministry.

This, he said, would enable the government to deal with errant headteachers who ignore government directives.

The secretary-general also demanded that an independent audit be done in schools to determine how funds that have been allocated to the institutions in the past have been used.

“We have not heard of any schools audit and it is time that we have one so that we can be sure that all resources allocated to the schools have been used properly,” said Mr Ndunda.

Mr Ndunda made the remarks following revelations that public secondary schools had devised ways of ripping off parents through charges that directly contravene the government’s laid-down fees structure.

In school fees demand letters for this year obtained from a sample of schools, headteachers have included levies for items that are catered for by the Ministry of Education and some that have been scrapped.