Call to remove school fee exemptions on private schools or provide financial assistance

Donna Tabilepo, Principal and owner of Donna’s Elite Foundation English Grammar School Photo credit: defegs.com

Since the closure of schools around the country as a preventative method against the COVID-19, school fee exemption was also enforced on all schools.

Government run schools and church run schools that receive grants from the government had their contribution fees cancelled, as for private schools with no grants from the government this has left a negative impact on them.

Owner and principal of Donna’s Elite Foundation English Grammar School, Donna Tabilepo says her school now faces a lot of challenges since parents are not paying school fees anymore.

Mrs. Tabilepo says without fees being paid the school won’t be able to pay for things such as rent, stationary requirements, utilities, stationary and salaries for teachers and ancillary staff.

Mrs. Tabilepo says without any source of income, private schools such as hers would face challenges in the long run and could even close down as without any income they would be left with zero balance and have no teachers around which would make running them impossible.

Donna’s Elite Foundation English Grammar School has 450 students in classes ranging from day care right through to year 8. Should the school close down, this would put 450 kids out there without a school, only for them to seek space in already crowded government schools.

Mrs. Tabilepo says the government should see this as a concern and provide subsidy for her school during these difficult times, or if that is too hard for them, they should lift this exemption and allow the parents to pay school fees to keep their children’s school in operation.

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