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Parents protest after students are sent home over unpaid bread ‘fees’


Parents of Ndakaini Mixed-Day Secondary School in Gatanga, Murang’a County, are up in arms after students were sent home to get money for bread, accusing the administration of imposing the fee without consulting them.

The parents who sought anonymity said they are forced to pay Sh960 for bread each term — excluding Sh800 for tuition fees. They say the levy is too high for a day school.

BREAD FEE

Students who had not paid the bread fee were sent home last week and most had not resumed by Monday.

This means that for the 500 students, the administration collects Sh480,000 for bread per term.

An invoice from a distributor to the school, a Nairobi-based bakery, indicates that the school buys bread worth Sh167,670 per month.

Simple calculations show that the school buys bread at retail price — rather than wholesale price — an issue the parents have complained about.

They feel that the money expected per student is too much given that the administration is supplied on wholesale price since the bread is brought in bulk and they have never been consulted when the management came up with the plan.

The parents says they had paid the school fees, but last Tuesday, their children were sent home to get bread money.

‘COERCION

“We feel that students should not be sent home for such things, and the Ministry of Education should intervene and help us,” a parent told the Nation.

Following the uproar, the school management and the Parents Teachers Association have arranged a series of meetings in the school to convince the parents on the need to pay the money.

On Monday, Form Three students reported to the school with their parents where the PTA used the opportunity to lure the parents to consent to the plan.

Parents with children in Form One are expected to meet on Tuesday, while forms Two and Four will meet on Wednesday and Thursday respectively.

Parents who were in the meeting told the Nation they were ‘coerced’ into agreeing because the school knew a media house was following up the matter.