ST Columbas High School in Bulawayo has been accused of forcing learners to work in the maize fields as punishment for late payment of tuition fees.
Fees at the institution are pegged at US$335 per term or equivalent in local currency. Parents with affected learners hit out at school authorities for allegedly punishing their children over unpaid fees.
“This is ridiculous and inconsiderate on the part of school authorities,” said one parent.
Another parent said the school must instead engage them without subjecting their children to hard labour.
School head Reverend Canon Albert Ncube, however, denied the allegations.
“For this particular term as I speak there’s not even a single child who has been sent back home for non-payment of fees,” Ncube said.
“Those making noise don’t just want to come to school and make payment arrangements.”
Primary and Secondary Education minister Torerayi Moyo recently issued a stern warning to school headmasters against expelling students for non-payment of school fees or withholding their results.
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