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Back to school as new school term begins

by Staff reporter
08 Jan 2013 at 08:06hrs | 2606 Views
Parents and pupils filled the streets yesterday as they frantically made their way to their various pick-up points en-route to boarding schools.

Others were struggling to get places for their children and were forced to secure places at rundown city private colleges.

The Rotten Row bus-stop was bustling with activity as school children boarded buses to their various schools in the outskirts of Harare.

A pupil from Howard school in Chiweshe said she had to resort to going back to school with a little "tuck" as her parents were complaining of cash constraints.

"I have to just accept it and go to school with the little that I have.

"At least I will not be turned away because they paid my fees in full," she said.

Parents have also had to opt for bulk buying to ease the burden of having to continuously send food stuffs to their children.

But those are the lucky ones.

Other parents are struggling to secure Form One places for their children and have been forced to secure places at shoddy colleges, just so their child can attend school.

One parent who was facing the challenge said she had enrolled her child at a college in downtown Harare since she had no option.

"I cannot have my child stay at home until a place has opened at the school of my choice.

"For now he has to make do with what is there in the hope that somewhere along the line, I can get him enrolled into a regular school," the parent said.

Deputy minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture, Lazarus Dokora blamed parents for failing to secure places because they were too choosy.

Dokora has said places were available at day schools but boarding schools were few and do not have the capacity to accommodate a large number of pupils because of the limited accommodation facilities.

Musariri High School parents were furious at the poor organisation of the school administration after children were soaked in rain after the school failed to arrange transport to ferry the children to the school near Chegutu.

"We had to organise transport for our children, the commuter omnibus operators overcharged us.

"What is disappointing is that the teacher who was in charge, a Mr Shoko did not even offer an apology. Instead, he questioned our wisdom. School authorities must be organised next time. How can we trust such people to take care of our children at the boarding schools?" fumed a parent whose son is at the school.

At uniform shops, parents dashed to meet school requirements in last minute shopping ventures.

Parents, despite the multi currency system adopted to ease economic pressure on consumers, have had to battle exorbitant school fees charged by greedy school authorities.

The ministry of Education, however, says there is nothing it can do to help parents as most of those who cry with fees woes will have opted for expensive private schools.

An estimated 211 school heads are facing prosecution for allegedly hiking school fees without approval from the relevant ministry.

New school term begins Parents were yesterday making efforts to prepare their children for the new term which begins today.

Source - School
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