Parents, federal staff schools set for showdown over fees, school condition
Posted by News Express | 12 July 2021 | 681 times
•Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu
By OZIORUVA ALIU, Benin City
There is an imminent showdown between the management of the Federal Staff School (FSS), the Federal Staff Secondary School (FSSS), both in Benin City, and the school’s Parents Teachers Association (PTA) over the way and manner the school is being run, introduction of “unexplainable” fees, non-maintenance of the schools, and poor working
conditions of the staff of the school.
The parents have through their lawyer, Olayiwola Afolabi written the school threatening legal action if their demands were not met.
At the meeting of the PTA weekend, the chairman, Charles Erikefe who was joined by the leadership of the PTA of FSSS accused the
chairman of the Committee of Heads (COHEADS), which is the administrative organ of the school, Moses Ajayi of paying deaf ears to their demand and passed a vote of no confidence on him.
But in a swift reaction, the COHEADS and Board of Trustees (BoT) of the school in a press statement announced the suspension of PTA in the school.
A statement signed by the Secretary COHEADS, Funmilayo Imuetiyan said, “The Board of Trustees of the Committee of Heads of Federal Government Establishments, COHEADS, Edo State has approved the suspension of the Parent Teachers Association, PTA activities in the Federal Staff School and the Federal Staff Secondary School, Benin-City.
The measure, according to the Board of Trustees, “is to tame the rising intransigence, confrontational attitude and an attempt by the current leadership of the PTA to constitute itself into a government within a government.”
But the parents in the meeting also adopted resolutions they passed in their last meeting part of which included that the staff of the schools are placed on the national minimum wage, the salaries of staff for COVID-19 lockdown period is a debt that should be paid to the teachers including the demand for the return of the management of the schools to the Board of Governors as enshrined in the article of COHEADS.
The parents also want all the board members who do not have their children in the school to relinquish their positions as they do not have a stake in there.
“We as parents therefore demand that from henceforth those saddled with the responsibility of taking major decisions in the school be people whose children are there and therefore would have a
stake in the school. As we speak, the roof of the hall is in disrepair and the furniture in the classes needs to be replaced.”
They also accused the COHEADS of reneging in their decision to engage a security outfit for the school and then resolved that they would continue to pay the N21,000 as school fees instead of the additions the school introduced which they alleged was to defraud them.
The parents through their lawyer want “A restructuring of the Boards of Governors of the Federal Staff School Ugbowo and the Federal Staff Secondary School, Ugbowo, Benin City, to include the representatives of the Parents’ Teachers Association of both schools, as they are stakeholders who will also serve as public interest holders.” (Vanguard)