Students of Caleb University, Imota, Lagos, have reacted to the full fees charged for its online classes.
Parents and guardians of students of the institution have expressed excitement over the decision.
The online academic programme was introduced by the management of the institution, following the Coronavirus pandemic that led to the shut down of schools in the country.
Parents have, however, reacted to the decision of the institution to charge fees such as accommodation, hospital, library fees among others when the students are not physically present on campus to enjoy those facilities.
As a result of the development, over 100 parents have written several complaint letters to the school management to draw their attention to the situation.
A parent, Olaoluwa Ogundemi, whose ward is an Accounting student, said the school mandated parents to make full payment for the session, despite that the school moved from physical learning to e-learning as a result of the pandemic.
“This issue started in March, some of us live abroad and we have been trying to get a hold of the school after they said they would start online lectures.
“Not only did they charge full school fees, but they also charged services which were not provided such as accommodation, internet, library, hospital, and others,” he said.
In a letter sent to Caleb University by some concerned parents, issues pertaining to the welfare of students and rights of the parents were highlighted.
Mr Ogundemi said when he contacted the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Nosa Owens-Ibie, on the issues and how parents could be added to the Parents’ Forum on Whatsapp, the school claimed the group was full as WhatsApp could only take about 250 participants
Femi Ojikutu, a guardian of a student at the university said the school failed to carry parents along on decisions made about the students and “imposed decisions made by a fraction of parents on the larger parents.”
Emmanuel Aderemi, a parent of a 200 level student at the university, alleged that the school denied students access to the online learning platform except they pay N200,000 upfront.
“We even pleaded with the management to allow students have access to learning pending the time parents will make payment. They can even withhold exam results of students who failed to pay afterwards, but they should allow all students have access to learning and not miss out,” he added.
Responding to the parents’ reactions, the spokesperson of the University, Elvis Otobo, stated that Caleb University has successfully conducted academic training and other regular activities on the University’s online platform, with student enrolment on the e-learning platform moving from 8% on April 20 to almost 100% by the beginning of July 2020.
“The institution early in the semester granted all students at undergraduate and postgraduate levels and lecturers, free access to various e-library resources, to enhance research, learning, and teaching experience and capacity,” the statement reads.
“Numerous other social, political, and spiritual activities are also going on virtually. The Student Representatives Council (SRC) elections are ongoing, with students currently campaigning to solicit votes for various positions.
Activities will culminate in manifesto presentation and the inauguration of the new executive, virtually,” the statement adds.
The statement also stated that the school in a bid to keep up with godly character started an ‘optional online prayer meeting’ which holds once a month.