Govt Warns Schools Against Unilateral School Fees Hikes

The Government has warned schools against unilateral fees hikes following reports of a rise in fees charged by public and private schools which has led to an increase in school dropouts.

Speaking to NewsDay, Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education secretary Moses Mhike said schools should seek Government approval before effecting any tuition fee increment. Said Mhike:

Any fee hike approval of any school comes through the ministry through an application, where we know a parent’s assembly has met for that purpose and then agreed.

He said the Government communicates to the school if its application has been approved or rejected.

Primary and Secondary Education Ministry spokesperson Taungana Ndoro said:

Every school is supposed to display at the school notice board, the correspondence of the approved fees structure from the ministry.

A Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education report shows that school dropouts stand at 0.44% and 4.44%, respectively. It says:

In 2021, the primary school dropouts remained at 0,53%. The proportion of secondary school dropouts decreased annually, from 3.99% in 2017 to 3.09% in 2019. Since then, the proportion increased to 3.28% in 2020 and 4.67% in 2021.

In 2022, the Zimbabwean proportion of primary and secondary school dropouts stood at 0.44% and 4.44%, respectively.

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) estimates that around 500 000 children of school-going age are currently out of school.

Obert Masaraure, president of the Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) said:

The right to education is facing an assault through incessant fee hikes.

Schools should not milk more than is necessary from struggling parents.

Last week learners at St Faith’s High School in Rusape, Makoni District in Manicaland Province, protested against a US$600 mission fund demanded by the school’s responsible authority the Anglican Diocese of Manicaland.



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