HomeLocal NewsPlumtree parents livid over fees

Plumtree parents livid over fees

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PLUMTREE Parents at Plumtree High School have reportedly threatened to transfer their children following a resolution passed at the annual general meeting on Saturday to scrap debts owed by the school development committee (SDC) members, who have not been paying for their children for the past four years.

The parents were angry their children were regularly expelled from school if they delayed school fee payments, while SDC members children were not paying.

Law enforcement agents were in attendance as chaos was feared at the meeting. The meeting was supposed to start at 9am, but was delayed until 12pm.

SDC chairman Elson Shava reportedly expressed concern over leakage of sensitive information to the Press prompting an investigation by the Ministry of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture into the school operations.

School head Prince Mange reportedly admitted at the meeting SDC members were not paying levies for their children and asked parents to agree on having the outstanding amounts owed by SDC members written off.

Two parents seconded the proposal making it a binding resolution. Calculations showed the SDC members had not paid a combined total of $8 300 per term which parents cited as a serious deprivation of funds for the cash-strapped school.

A parent told NewsDay the move was a sad development since the 10 SDC members have two children each at the school.

We had better withdraw our children from this school. We cannot continue to be swindled like this. We will be writing to the Auditor-General soon to express our concerns over this issue, said a parent.

Irate parents exposed alleged corruption activities to the Education, Sport, Arts and Culture minister David Coltart in October last year. The government immediately dispatched a probe team to the school, but its findings are yet to be made public.

Parents were infuriated by the schools failure to settle a debt of $60 000 owed to the Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (Zesa) and Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa).

They also accused school authorities of failing to account for $80 000 meant for the purchase of a power generator.

Mange reportedly told parents it was normal for institutions to owe Zesa and Zinwa such amounts.

He said the money meant for the purchase of a generator was used for refurbishment of infrastructure.

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