Private schools in Sindh to challenge orders for reduction in tuition fees amid virus outbreak
Statesman Report
KARACHI: All Sindh Private Schools Association representative Haider Ali on Wednesday said that the association would challenge in court a directive of the Sindh government that asked private schools across the province to grant a 20% concession in tuition fees to students in the wake of the coronavirus crisis that has forced the closure of schools.
On the directives of Sindh Education Minister Saeed Ghani, the Directorate of Inspection and Registration of Private Institutions Sindh (Dirpis) on Tuesday made it mandatory for all private schools to grant a 20% concession in tuition fee for the months of April and May.
The education minister has taken this decision in order to provide financial assistance to the parents affected by the lockdown in the current coronavirus pandemic, a statement said. In his statement, the minister said no private school would terminate the services of the teaching and nonteaching staffers during the lockdown while the administrators were bound to pay full salaries to all staffers.
Ali, while talking to Geo Pakistan, said that private schools in the province were already charging a reduced rate. “Private schools in Sindh teach approximately 3.3 million students. They are already charging a reduced fee, they cannot reduce it more,” he said. “We will challenge the government order that stipulates schools offer a 20% reduction in fees,” he said.
Kashif Mirza, the chief of the All Pakistan Private Schools Association, has also rejected the government order. He also spoke to Geo Pakistan on Wednesday. “We will petition the court against the orders asking schools to reduce tuition fees by 20%,” he said.
‘Ghani says government will defend itself’
Sindh Minister for Education and Labour Saeed Ghani on Wednesday admitted that the government did not take the management of private schools into confidence before taking the decision to ask for a reduction in school fees.
He, however, said that he is ready to meet and listen to them. “If they want to challenge this in a court of law, they have the right to do so. Government will defend itself,” said Ghani.