First year students who reported to the La Presbyterian School on Wednesday to complete their registration to be admitted to the school, were reportedly urged to pay a GH¢80 for desks or risk standing in class during teaching.
The directive, which is alien to most parents accompanying their wards to the school caused some confusion at the school’s premises on Wednesday.
According to the Headmaster of the school, Samuel Salamat, the school was only asking for voluntary contributions due to the poor state of its desks.
“We have only appealed to parents that we have challenges with furniture so if they can help us repair our furniture so that we can start classes as early as possible. They cannot bring furniture from the house. We are telling them to make voluntary contributions so that we can use that to repair the furniture. It is voluntary, any amount that you can get… It is not a fixed amount. We only gave them the information that last year, parents paid GH80 to guide them.”
Mr. Salamat said “if the person is unable to pay, we will still admit them… [But] if the chairs are not there, what can we do? A lot of my furniture are broken down. I have not taken stock to find out the furniture that is available. A lot of my tables and chairs are broken down and I can foresee that we will need more.”
The agitation by parents was due to the government’s introduction of the Free Senior High School program which has absorbed students from paying statutory fees such as tuition, feeding among others.
The government has warned that schools found to be taking illegal fees from parents or first-year students will be penalized.
Free SHS is not against voluntary contributions
But Mr. Salamat told Citi News’ Anass Seidu that parents must not see the introduction of the Free SHS program as an excuse not to contribute to the development of the school.
According to him, such voluntary contributions will help improve the school’s infrastructure and promote quality teaching and learning.