Linstead school defends proposal to charge for study material

The privately owned Lower Victoria Basic School in Linstead, St. Catherine, is defending a controversial proposal it has made for parents to pay for each student to receive study material.

The school said it is charging $3,500 for the study material, adding that parents would not be required to make any additional payment this term. The tuition fee for the entire April-July term would have been $7,000.

The school has been ordered closed like all others across the island; this as Government tries to minimize the spread of the highly contagious Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). It is not yet clear when they will reopen.

Principal at Lower Victoria Basic School, Regina Martin, told The Beacon that, despite the closure of school, parents are still requesting study material for their children.

That’s the reason the school proposed the $3,500 fee, considering that teachers are paid with funds collected from parents.

Martin added that, in reaching the students, the school would have used a video conferencing service called Zoom.

“A decision was not made about charging fees for lessons. It was broadcast as a suggestion to parents for them to let us know what they thought about it. No one responded, but choose to call [The Beacon] instead,” the principal further lamented.

She said Lower Victoria Basic is not the only school charging fees for study material during the current closure of schools.

Meanwhile, one parent contents that it is unfair for the school to charge for study material, considering that many parents have lost their sources of income during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. “People can barely find food,” the parent added.


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