Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
Minister of State for Education, Chief Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, has affirmed that private schools owners have the rights to charge fees for third term as schools start opening for exit classes activities.
He was responding to a question on if it was proper for private schools to charge for a third term fee, considering the fact that the period to be spent in school by exiting students would be short, at the media briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic in Abuja.
According to him, owning a private school is not being charitable, but running a business, explaining “for public institutions, we can’t tell you that we charge school fees, most of our schools are free, public schools are free and varies from state to state.
“But when you go into a contractual relationship with a school owner, a school owner is a passionate person, but is also a business person. He’s not running a charity organisation, they may be charitable in their approach, but it’s not charity.
“So, it’s important that you appreciate that a private school is entitled to charge fees for the work they do. The person that runs a school may be a very passionate person about education. But they will still charge fees.
“We did communicate last week before went on break that really, once these WAEC exams start on August 17, it would run though to the middle of September. We will immediately thereafter commence NABTEB and it will run into October.
“About a week to its end, we will begin NECO exams on October 10 and run through to November. So, for all of these persons, we expect that children are working, examining and learning. We don’t just want them to be in the school and be playing, this is serious stuff, this is exit class, this is what says a lot about the six years they’ve spent in secondary school.
“Even right right, we are lifting the registration for NABTEB and NECO, continuously running, even while we are about to begin WAEC. All exams are a test of outcomes. We will want our teachers to continuously engage them”, he said.
On schools’ reopening, the Minister said
“schools are essentially opened at the moment for exit classes, some of them have already commenced today, I monitored some of the developments about Lagos State. Some other states will open as the week proceeds.