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School Fees: Kaduna Orders Refund, Rescinds Circular

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The Kaduna government has declared as “invalid”, a recent circular by its ministry of education on payment of school fees by students of senior secondary schools.

Special Adviser on Media and Communication to the governor, Muyiwa Adekeye, announced the development in a statement issued on Tuesday November 8, 2022.

A circular recently issued by the ministry of education had directed heads of senior secondary schools to collect “nominal fees” from students.

But the government declared the circular invalid, adding that it is committed to ensuring free 12-year education for children in the state.

The government had earlier established a policy allowing children in primary, secondary, technical, and vocational schools to enjoy free education for 12 years.

Nasir el-Rufai, governor of Kaduna, who chaired the executive council meeting during which the circular was invalidated, said the free education policy is a legacy and reflects “the government’s abiding belief in promoting equality to opportunity and expanding access to education as a lever of social mobility”.

“Executive council stated that the Kaduna state government will continue to faithfully implement the free senior secondary education policy and to discharge the primary responsibility for its public schools,” the statement reads.

“The council recalled that in 2015, the government explicitly banned the payment of PTA fees and other levies in public schools in order to ensure that the free education policy actually delivers education without burdening parents with hidden fees or levies.

“Therefore, the council observed that the circular issued by the ministry of education to school principals on the collection of nominal fees is not consistent with the government policy, and is thus invalid.

“The circular from the ministry of education to the heads of schools, dated 1st November 2022, is therefore rescinded with immediate effect, and all monies that may have been collected should be refunded forthwith.

“With careful implementation since 2015, this policy guarantees every child access to education from the first year of primary school to the completion of the final year of senior secondary school or technical/vocational school.

“KDSG’s deep conviction that government has an obligation to provide free education up to senior secondary level or its equivalent has been expressed in legal provisions that make it compulsory for every child to go to school for 12 uninterrupted years, since the financial obstacle represented by school fees has been removed.”

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