LOTS - Fee Increment Concerns
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LOTS have implemented a fee increase of 27.5% per key stage. Children moving from reception to Year 1 face an increase of double the amount at 52.5%.
Having only been open for a year the school is still not fully established and increasing fees by this amount is unacceptable for what they are able to provide at present and discounts all of the changes that have taken place during the year.
When the school first opened, all students were expected to stay until 1500hrs and partake in 2 hours of fee inclusive extra curricular activities. This has been reduced to less than an hour per day (for reception) and on occasion does not happen at all.
During the year there has been a lot of instability due to teaching staff changes (for reception) and there has been no evidence of the agreed Degree and Diploma qualified teachers per class. Additionally it seems that some extra work could be done in the vetting of teaching staff prior to employment to avoid issues like this.
School policies have not been sent home, with the exception of the Health & Safety policy - which again shows that the school is not fully established.
LOTS is not a member of the Independent Schools Association of Zambia - which would show that they are a primary school that enjoys recognition by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Zambia. LOTS also doesn't have any certifications to recognise that is teaches the British Curriculum - all points which do not support the fee increase.
Parents were not consulted at any stage about the significant increases the school would pose on them. The letter which came out about the fees, only 4 days before school closed for the end of year, has the wrong telephone number and the email address does not work, which does not allow for open communication between the parents and the school.
While we understand that the school is still developing and needs to increase its capital in order to do so, we do not think that an increase of this size is feasible for what can be achieved in one year, nor affordable for the parents that send their children to your school. Increases like this will lead to children leaving which will not help the development of the school.
A suggested approach for this year would be incremental increases of 15% per school year, instead of the fee structures presently used between early years and primary school - this would be beneficial for both the school and the parents. As the structure stands, the children moving between early years, reception and primary are the ones that are penalised the most as they are incurring double charges.
Additionally we would like LOTS to be aware that increases of the quantum that are proposed for this year are not acceptable in the longer term.
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