Parents of students at Podar Jumbo Kids in Santacruz are upset with the pre-school’s decision to hike fees.
Parents claim the school has increased its annual fees from Rs 69,000 to Rs 90,000 this year for the ICSE section and from Rs 45,000 to Rs 67,000 for the CBSE section, without any explanation.
“We have requested them to give a breakdown of the fee structure but the school is unwilling to tell us what we are paying for,” said a parent, who did not wish to be named.
Parents are particularly upset about the school’s policy of compulsory hobby classes and bus travel for all students.
“Why are they forcing us to send our children for hobby classes or to come by the school bus? Some people might want to drop their children on their own,” said another parent, also requesting anonymity.
The deadline for paying the fees for the first term is April 10.
The aggrieved parents have approached Forum for Fairness in Education, an NGO, for help.
The school, however, denies any unjustified fee hike.
“Every year there is a nominal 10 per cent hike which we inform the parents about in October itself,” said Swati Popat Vats, the school’s director. “We are not out to make profits.”
On the issue of compulsory hobby classes, she said: “There are no hidden costs in that; it has always been part of the school’s curriculum and the parents have known that.”
She added that they are unlikely to implement the rule that everyone should come to school by bus.
In March, the state government had issued an order saying schools cannot hike their fees above the 2008-09 levels without approaching their respective Parent-Teacher Association and the education department. Pre-schools, however, do not come under the ambit of this resolution.