I WRITE to urge the Minister of Education to investigate Gateway Schools forthwith.
On December 5 I attended what I thought was going to be a meeting between parents and representatives of Gateway Schools. But alas! the riot act
was read to us in no more than 10 minutes, wherein costs estimates were highlighted — 73% of the costs were in respect of staff expenses while only 5% related to teaching expenses (whatever this means).
All along I thought the core business of schools is to teach and not support an extravagant staff complement that awards itself inflation-adjusted salaries each time fees are reviewed. All costs, including salaries, were projected after adjusting for inflation.
How many people in this country are getting inflation-adjusted salaries? Isn’t this one of the hidden causes of inflation in view of the fact that we don’t see signs of productive activities at the schools?
Quizzed on how the imposed figures of $897 000 for sixth form and slightly lower amounts for other classes reconcile with the recent published fees list for all schools by the minister, we were advised that the minister’s list was of no consequence.
We were also advised that the fees were not debatable before we were quickly dismissed.
During a prize-giving ceremony on the same day, prefects for 2007 were shown to the parents. To my utter amazement, 75% of the prefects are of a particular race.
Further, why is it that the head-boy is always from the same race while a ceremonial head-girl is of the other race, just to pacify the discriminated?
Teachers from the high school recently expressed concern at alleged racism in the form of salaries for one race being pegged at higher levels than the other race.
This nonsense must stop, minister!
We as parents do not mind footing all the bills that add value to the development of our children, but we need to be respected.
We need disclosure of adequate information. We are prepared to pay fees that are higher than your stipulated levels if the above issues are addressed following an investigation.
Maybe Anti-Corruption minister Munyaradzi Mangwana should get involved as well.
Gateway teachers must understand that they are in Zimbabwe and that some of us are not prepared to foot bills for external holidays for some senior members of staff!
The school could do itself good by appointing a person with public relations expertise.