Parents of Lagos State Model Colleges have kicked against a new increase in the feeding and welfare fees for students enrolled in the schools.
One of the parents, who spoke with SaharaReporters on the condition of anonymity, said the State government has now increased the feeding and welfare fee from N25,000 to N50,000.
He noted that the actual fee reviewed is N125,000, but with a N75,000 subsidy from the government.
He queried the sudden increase and subsequent subsidy when the government never gave a subsidy on the N25, 000 parents have been paying.
The aggrieved parent alleged that the surge in the fee is simply a means of extorting parents while the government officials enrich their own pockets.
He said, “No parent of Lagos Model College will agree to this N50,000 feeding fee for boarding students.
“Before now, we paid N25,000 for feeding and welfare; now the question is; has Lagos state government ever subsidised the N25,000 feeding fee before? No.
“Why now is the government interested in subsidizing and increase the feeding fee? The fee currently paid is N25,000; then the government came with a proposal to help us subsidise it after increasing it to N125,000 per child. At first, they claimed to subsidise N50,000 per child, asking parents to pay N75,000.
“Later, the state Commissioner and the Permanent Secretary of Education said it has been reduced to N50,000 per child. This means that Lagos State Government will subsidise N75,000 per child while parents will pay N50,000.
“This is to show that all officials of the state government in relation to the increase have a fraudulent motive behind the increase which is not justifiable.
“The present N25,000 paid by each student had long been mismanaged, full of fraudulent and unaccounted expenses. Honestly, there is a need for an audit of the money because N25,000 per student at 1000 students will give you N25million naira.
“The Principals in each school are the only administrators and signatory to the account and they spend this money at their will.
“Meanwhile, each student, on resumption per term takes some items called hostel requirements to school.”
“We know that the reason they have called for this increase is due to the fact that they cannot get their usual cut in the feeding fee and they want to maintain the cut.
“The Honorable Commissioner for Education owns a private school so also others calling for the increase. Their children are enrolled in expensive schools and abroad with our money. They don't have human feelings and sympathy.
“We, the parents have agreed that even if there is an increase, it should be pegged at N30, 000 which is all-inclusive of hostel requirements and auxiliaries per student.
“We are also asking for the inclusion of parents who are professionals in the kitchen management of the school.
“The Coalition of parents also demands the inclusion of parent body in the administration of the fee paid by students. This will enable proper needs and accountability.
“The parents through Coalition of Parent forum executives also call for the thorough AUDIT of the account of all Model Colleges in Lagos State.
”In conclusion, we have rejected the feeding fee of N50, 000 presented to us but have agreed to an upward review pegged at N30, 000,” another parent said.