Fri, 05 Aug 1994

Extra fees at school

From Pikiran Rakyat

I have been meaning to air my complaint for a long time over the irregularities in the management of a state-run elementary school in Perumnas Antapani. Earlier, I tolerated the problem for various reasons.

What is really distressing me is the attitude of the principal of the school in managing enrollment. He has instructed the teachers handling enrollments of new students to admit only those students who are willing to pay extra admission fees to the school.

It would not be a problem if soliciting such fees had not been prohibited by the government. It really puzzles me, as a parent of a new student, that the school can continue such a practice despite the government announcing it illegal.

The government has announced that education from elementary school to junior high school is compulsory and free. But in reality new students who have been admitted to elementary schools have been compelled to pay Rp 50,000. The school also collects Rp 25,000 from those students who are going to be collectively enrolled into junior high schools. That is not to mention the Rp 15,000 collected by the school from each student for a farewell gathering.

Most of the teachers at the school also have been complaining about the principal's attitude toward them. He has even refused to provide any financing for the teachers to develop the school's environment. Worst still, some of the teachers who have good records in their jobs have been sacked.

I hope the ministry of education and culture will pay serious attention to the problem if it wants the nine years compulsory education to be a success.

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