Students seek government intervention in ‘exorbitant’ fees charged by private schools

Kathmandu- A joint delegation from the All Nepal National Free Students Union (ANNFSU) and All Nepal National Independent Students Union (ANNISU-Revolutionary) today called on Minister for Education, Science and Technology Giriraj Mani Pokhrel, seeking the government intervention in high fees charged by private schools.

The team headed by ANNFSU president Nabina Lama and ANNISU-R officiating president Surendra Basnet submitted an eight-point memorandum to the line minister, demanding that the issue be addressed immediately.

Students have accused private schools of charging excessive fess which as they say is against the principle of socialism-oriented education policy adopted by the state constitutionally. “Schools found increasing fees unreasonably should face action, and they should be made to stop this instantly,” they asserted.

More, they have demanded the real implementation of the right to free education up to the secondary level guaranteed by the constitution, and the immediate introduction of a new Federal Education Act in accordance with the spirit of National Education Commission’s report.
Besides, the students unions have emphasised the guarantee of real access of target groups to scholarship programmes launched by institutional schools.

“Private schools’ activities of charging old students additionally every year in the name of admission are against the law, and the activities are taking place rampantly just in a bid to amass property. Schools involved in such unlawful acts should be punished and made to return the accumulated amount,” notes the memorandum.

The trend of overcharging students under different other headings like application forms, school uniform, tie, belt, (school) bags and so one should be stopped instantly, they stressed, demanding the effective implementation of an agreement reached to return the amount overcharged by the Gandaki Medical College from students in an instance. Receiving the memo, Minister Pokhrel responded that the government was working to improve the status of community schools. As he said, the local governments have been given the responsibility to systematise private schools.

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