LAHORE: The Punjab government on Monday directed private schools in the province to give 20 per cent concession in tuition fee in addition to collecting the fees of the following two months separately.
Addressing a news briefing in Lahore, the chief minister further said that private schools have been directed to not layoff their employees.
•The fees will be collected on a monthly bases
•Job Security of Teachers will be ensured
— Government of Punjab (@GOPunjabPK) April 6, 2020
The decision was taken last week in a meeting of a special committee which was headed by Punjab Minister for Law Raja Basharat and attended by Minister for School Education Murad Raas.
At the time, the law minister had said the schools were asked to come up with recommendations within two days, adding that after receiving proposals from the school owners, Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar would take the final decision.
He had, however, said that private school owners should voluntarily give a discount of at least 20 per cent in the monthly fees of April and May. Basharat had further urged the schools not to take a three-month fee at a time, neither any teacher should be fired nor their salary deducted.
On the other hand, All Pakistan Private Schools Association President Kashif Mirza said that they haven’t received an official notification over the matter so far.
“How are we supposed to pay [teachers] when we are not receiving even 1% of the fee,” he asked.
“We are not even allowed to open the gates of the schools,” he said. “We will consult our lawyers and then announce our stance on the decision,” Mirza added.
Speaking about laying off employees, Mirza said no school in Punjab has done it yet and won’t in future as well.
Residents have lauded the government’s decision. Some said that the fees’ should be further reduced to 50%.
All schools across Punjab will remain closed till May 30 due to the rising cases of COVID-19 which has infected nearly 1,500 people in the province so far.