Contributions demanded from children
Guyana Chronicle
December 15, 2001

In Guyana, we speak of education given to Primary, Secondary, and Nursery school students free, but I have noted and discovered otherwise.

In some primary and nursery schools, students are asked to bring money each month to pay cleaners, to buy chalk, and other writing tools, to purchase classroom aides, to purchase toilet tissue, etc. Students have to shorten their pocket money and contribute to the purpose mentioned above. How can this be, Mr. Editor?

Now, recently, a parent told me that her child had to pay $1000. each month for the buying of toilet paper for the school lavatory facility, and also chalk. She went further to tell me that teachers asked students to take Christmas decorations to school to decorate the classrooms. Aren't they going too far? Aren't they putting financial strains on the parents of these children?

Now, suppose a child doesn't have anything to take for the teacher to "nice" up the classroom, and chooses to stay home, to avoid embarrassment, that child stands to lose.

Does our Ministry of Education know about this? Do they know what the teachers are doing? What happens to the parents of children who can't afford Christmas decors and money to buy learning materials? The woman told me that she bought a $300. decoration for her child to take to school.

If the teachers want, they should take monies out of their pockets and buy Christmas decorations. Don't put economic, and emotional strains on our children to buy this and that and take this and that to school.

leon suseran