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Nakuru parents accuse schools of sneaking in extra charges

FRANCIS MUREITHIBy FRANCIS MUREITHI
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Parents from Nakuru County have urged Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha to rein in on head teachers who have introduced extra levies in this year’s fee structure.

They alleged that some secondary school principals, after realising the ministry was keenly monitoring them, have introduced extra charges on uniforms.

“The principals are not listing some items in the official fee structures and are issuing separate circulars with extra charges to Form One students,” Ms Josephine Kerubo, a parent told the Nation.

Ms Kerubo, whose daughter has been admitted to a school in Rongai sub-county, said she required to pay Sh15,000 for uniforms.

“I am wondering what kind of uniforms these are. If I the uniforms from local shops it will cost me about half of that price. The school management has insisted that my daughter will not be admitted without buying the uniforms from the school,” said Ms Kerubo.

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Another parent said that one of the principals told parents that the government was not sincere on the amounts on the fees structure.

 “What Prof George Magoha is not telling you parents is that with increased enrollment, the school infrastructures and food budget have been stretched to the limit and schools must devise ways of keeping students in school,” said another parent.

INCREASED ENROLMENT

The parents’ outcries come at a time when Prof Magoha has warned school heads over extra charges.  

Most extra county boarding schools charge between Sh53,000 and Sh60,000 per year.

Some principals told the Nation that they were finding it difficult to keep students in school.

“The Ministry of Education is pushing for increased enrollment but it has not factored in the extra charges the schools will incur such as water bill, food and electricity,” said a principal of a school in Kuresoi South.

Besides congestion, most schools do not have adequate facilities like dormitories, classrooms, dining halls, libraries and even teachers.

“We used to adequately budget for science practical materials for about 40 students without disrupting our annual budget but with a class of 50, our budget is overstretched,” said another principal in Molo sub-county.