TUESDAY, 2ND APRIL, 2019
Below is a Ministerial Statement Delivered to Parliament by General Education Minister Hon. David Mabumba.
The Vision of the Ministry is to provide ‘’Quality, Lifelong Education for all which is Accessible, Inclusive and Relevant to Individual, National and Global Needs value Systems”. This implies that it is the responsibility of the Government and other stakeholders in education provision to ensure that education is accessible to all. In achieving this aspiration, the Government has made efforts to make education affordable to all eligible learners by reducing or completely doing away with school fees that were identified as one of the barriers to accessing education at various levels.
While parents are partners in education provision through cost sharing, the Ministry has continued to minimize the cost of education on the part of the parents/guardians towards the education of their children. This has been so in order to ensure that as many children as possible access education services. The Ministry has the responsibility to regulate the fees and in January, 2016 a circular on GCE and User Fees in Grant Aided and Public Schools which guided on the scale of fees to be charged was given. However, despite the guidance given, schools have continued to charge high fees and numerous complaints from the public and other stakeholders have been received over high school fees. My Ministry has not been impressed with this scenario over school fees.
In view of the above, my Ministry has revised school fees as follows:
(a) User Fees in Day and Boarding Secondary Schools
Guided by the principle of the needs of the schools and their locality, the Ministry has directed that pupils in grades 8 to 12 should pay K150.00 user fees in schools in remote areas while K200.00 user fees should be paid by pupils in other schools per term.
In line with the guidance given on meals in boarding schools the Ministry has directed that pupils should pay an amount not exceeding K1, 000.00 per term as boarding fees. However, schools charging less than K1, 000.00 per term are at liberty to maintain their current fees.
With this guidance no additional charges should be demanded from learners either in cash (administration fee, affiliation fee, registration fee, practical fees, computer fees, learning material fees etc.) or in kind (cement, realm of paper, cobra, paint, slasher, hoe, mattress etc)
(c) Project Fees
School Head teachers, Parents Teachers Committees and School Boards that may have a compelling need to undertake a project at school and need to charge project fees should request for permission to do so from the Permanent Secretary through their District Education Board Secretaries and Provincial Education Officers. A good and clear justification supported with documentary evidence should support the application as earlier guided.
In order to mitigate financial constraints or difficulties in raising the approved fees which some Parents or Guardian may experience, school authorities should allow such pupils to pay their user fees in installments. Pupils whose parents are engaged in subsistence farming can be allowed to pay fees in kind, e.g. a bag of maize or beans, goats, rice etc. which the school can translate into cash. The revised school fees come into effect in the second term of 2019.
In conclusion, I would like to take this opportunity to appeal to Aided Schools to be considerate when fixing school fees for their learners. The Ministry of General Education would appreciate a situation where fees charged by Aided Schools are comparable to the ones approved in Public Schools.
It is hoped that this statement will help address the disparities in the school fees that schools have been charging.
The Ministry of General Education will not take kindly to any school Head teacher who will not adhere these directives.
I Thank you Mr