Desmond Mgboh, Kano
Kano State Government has restated its directive to operators of private schools in the state to either reduce their third school fees by 25 to 30 per cent or risk the cancellation of the whole of third term.
State Education Commissioner, Mohammed Sanusi Kiru told Daily Sun in his office that there was no plan to reverse the decision even as he observed that the decision was taken in the public’s interest.
He said that the finances of many families in the state were badly hit by COVID-19 lock down, adding that it was almost impossible for most parents to afford their regular school fees in the light of the development.
Sani stated that other states like the FCT, Abuja, Kwara, Kogi and others had for this same reason cancelled the third term academic session to allow for parents to recuperate a little more so when they would still be expected to pay another fee by January.
He also observed that the state government had invested a lot in these private schools during the lockdown adding that the government fumigated all the private schools as well as provided them with Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs)such as face masks, hand wash, temperature thermometers and sanitizers.
He argued that having received all these interventions, the government had expected the private schools owners to reciprocate same by being considerate to parents given the prevailing economic situation.
He reasoned that schools are not a place for making money or chasing profits, adding that , “If you are operating a private school purely for the purpose of enriching yourself and not for impacting knowledge or supporting government’s desire of promoting qualitative education, then it is better you go back to the market”
He cautioned those operators who are opposed to the policy, saying that, “We as a government are in charge of the academic calendar, we are in charge of registering these private schools and we are also in charge of either re validating or canceling your certificate.
His position has, however, being faulted by some of the operators of private schools, who has debunked claim that the state government assisted them financially during the COVID-19 lockdown in the state.
An executive member of the proprietors of these private schools in the state said that they did not receive any form of financial support from the state during the long months of staying at home.