Parents with children enrolled at The Dominican Convention High School in Harare are dismayed by school authorities’ move to unilaterally hike school fees by over 100 per cent over the first 2021 terms.
A concerned parent who spoke to ZiMetro News said he was shocked to receive an invoice from the Roman Catholic Church-run school earlier this week indicating that fees are now US$1 890 per child per term.
Last year, pupils were paying US$800 per term, even though lessons were being conducted online since March because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a January newsletter sent out to parents, the school said that they can pay half the fees so that pupils start online lessons on Tuesday 12 January 2021.
Parents were advised to draw up payment plans on how they would pay the balance. The parent, who preferred anonymity, said:
What has our world come to in a pandemic where we have Christian Schools associated with the Vatican increasing fees by more than double, yet parents are on lockdown [and] have so much to deal with?
When contacted for comment, Dominican Convention headmistress and sister Kudzai Mutsure could neither confirm nor deny the reports on the new fee structure.
It is not clear whether authorities at the school were given the green light to hike fees by the government. The law stipulates that schools have to seek approval to increase tuition fees from the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education.