Malawi Government through the Ministry of Education Science and Technology has dismissed the reports that it intends to introduce school fees for primary education in the country.
The education director in the ministry Joseph Chimombo said this in Lilongwe on a press briefing which was organized to tell the nation as the rumors have been circulating since July that a pupil will be paying k5,000 per term as school fees.
Chimombo said government has no any intentions of doing that since people in the country are already facing financial challenges and in so doing is denying the right to education for everyone.
“The primary school education is free and will remain like that until further, everyone knows that everybody has right to education so if we are going to introduce the fees for primary schools it means that a lot of children will not be able to enroll,” he said.
He also said that pupils should pay the school fund in their institutions upon agreement which is made between two parties through the Parents Teachers Associations (PTA).
“School fund its totally different from the school fees and this amount of money is paid in different amounts. Teachers and parents should always meet to discuss the amount of money for each pupil either per month/term basis since this money is used to carter some other resources which are accessed within the institution like paying bills for electricity and water and sometimes this money is used to pay the guards,” said the director
He also condemned teachers and some head teachers who send back pupils who fail to pay school fund saying that it’s illegal since people are misled saying these teachers are doing that with the clout from the government which is wrong.
“Let me ask all the head teachers and other teachers in all the primary schools across the country, no pupil should be sent back home just because he/she has failed to pay the school fund.”
“It’s not a right thing to do so of course school fund is supposed to be paid by every pupil but some parents can’t afford and when setting this amount please make sure that the fund is fair since other parents have more than three children for example, so if the school fund is k1000 it means that some of the parents and guardians will not manage to pay it,” Chimombo concluded.