Suresh Kumar

Karnataka: Notices to schools tying up with loan lenders for school fee

June 16, 2021

Karnataka’s minister for primary and secondary education, S Suresh Kumar has warned private schools against getting parents pay school fees by tying up with loan providing agencies.

Last week, an advertisement by one of the private schools offering to connect parents to an education fee loan lending player was circulated among several parents’ forums in Bengaluru. Parents could take loans at an interest between the range 0-3.5% in case they found it tough to pay the school fee in one go, the advertisement read and drew flak from a large section of parents and activists. Similar instances were reported from other schools in the state as well.

Responding to this, Suresh Kumar has said that notice would be served to schools tying up with financial agencies and forcing parents to pay school fee.

“A few private school managements have roped in money lenders to extend loans to parents so that they can pay school fees. It is a shame that schools have gotten into this nosiness. This Is unfortunate and has invited the wrath of chief minister Yediyurappa as well. He said that notices should be served to such schools,” said Kumar speaking to reporters in Kolar, Karnataka after reports of such nexus surfaced.

Responding to this, Shashi Kumar, general secretary, Karnataka Associated Management of English Medium Schools (KAMS) said that parents have evaded paying fees for over two years citing the pandemic as a reason and call it torture when asked to pay up. “How can we give continuous education if last year’s fee is not paid and this year’s admission is not confirmed?” he asked. He sought the minister’s clarification on the fee issue.

Meanwhile, some stakeholders opine that the scheme has been misunderstood and that it was perceived incorrectly. A spokesperson from one such Delhi-based school fee financing company said that the government targeting schools for enabling parents to pay school fees was “completely misdirected”. “1 out of 3 TVs are purchased via monthly payments (made famous by Bajaj). Parents spend 12% of their annual income on school fee per child (actual data from our customer base). In this context, the ability for parents to pay their school fees in easy monthly payments is the need of the hour. Currently, schools are partnering with companies to enable their parents to pay their fees in monthly payments and also bearing the interest charges themselves without passing the burden to parents. Such companies are also providing insurance benefits to these parents.” The company also feels that this is a win-win proposition for both schools and parents. It is just an option and not a compulsion for parents. 

Also read: 

Karnataka: Pvt schools force parents to take loans to pay fees

Karnataka: No fee cut say private schools as parents make representation for same

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