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Education: Grade 12 pupil de-registered from writing matric exams after father failed to pay school fees

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Education: Grade 12 pupil de-registered from writing matric exams after father failed to pay school fees

De-registered Student of Grade Twelve

A grade 12 pupil is set to miss out on writing his matric examinations after he was deregistered at Reddford House Northcliff, a private school in Randburg, northern Johannesburg, because his father owed more than R60,000 in school fees.

The school sent an email to the 18-yearold, informing him that he would be deregistered from writing matric with the Independent Examinations Board (IEB).

“I have been finalising matric registrations with Independent Examination Board. In this process I was informed that I should deregister you. This means you will not be able to write the IEB national senior certificate (NSC) examination at Reddford House in Northcliff. As a result, our teachers will also not be available to you for any assistance in their working capacity. You will rely on tutors if you want to continue preparing for NSC examinations this year,” read the email.

The pupil’s father, who asked not to be named, said he could not pay the monthly fee of R12,854 as his work was reduced to 16 days a month.

“This has left my son very devastated and emotionally drained. I am worried about his wellbeing. I had been in communication with the school’s finance department after I made arrangements to pay off my arrears from last year. I then started paying R9,000 a month for this year’s school fees and it was only two months when I paid R8,000. My son has since been at home when the lockdown started and when he was barred from returning to school on July 7…” said the father.

The father, through his lawyers, wrote a letter to the school on July 17, demanding his son to be reinstated.

The letter, which was addressed to the school principal, read: “Our instructions are that … registration at your school was terminated by a letter dated 1 July 2020 due to non-payment of a balance of R60,850.72…

“Your remedy as the school is to allow the learner to proceed with his/her studies while the school pursue other means of recovering the outstanding fees. The contract between the school and the parent is that the parent pays the school fees and the contract between the school and the learner is inter alia that the school offers lessons to the learner.

“We are instructed to demand immediate reinstatement of the learner… We advise that your failure to reinstate shall leave us with no option but to proceed with an application to the high court for his reinstatement.”

National Alliance of Independent Schools Association chairperson Mandla

Mthembu said: “Our schools rely on the payment of school fees and any other private support. The school can demand payment through lawyers, put you in credit bureau and they can even attach property in order to be able to get their money.

“They are not supported by the government and as a result they have to pay teachers and many other things.”

Efforts to get a comment from the school were unsuccessful yesterday. The receptionist at the school promised Sowetan that the principal would call us back but they had not done so at the time of publication.

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