Education in third-world countries is given immense importance and attention, as it is seen as the only way to a nation’s growth and prosperity in the long run. Similarly, people in Pakistan dream of quality education for their children, making sure they do so right from the start.
Every Pakistani parent, as soon as their children are born, starts worrying about their education. Unlike other countries, quality education in Pakistan has become very expensive.
Recently, a social media post went viral where someone shared a picture of one of Pakistan’s most renowned institute’s fee challan for the admission of Montessori (Nursery) students and it had people all over the country outraged. The school is Roots School System that is based in Rawalpindi Cantt, in the Twin-Cities.
As per the challan, the tuition fee for Montessori admissions is broken down into 11 different parts, charging parents a mammoth amount of Rs. 151,073. The registration fee for a Montessori student is Rs. 9075, while the admission fee stands at a staggering Rs. 54, 450. Imagine paying this much JUST to have your child enrolled in the school’s nursery system.
Furthermore, the security deposit for a 4-year-old child’s admission is Rs. 36, 300, adding an unknown, unreasoned, Annual Resource Charge of Rs. 15,682. The prospectus for Roots Grammar School is worth Rs. 1000, while the ‘NEW’ yearbook that parents must get is worth Rs. 1400.
The school is also charging parents money for the school badge, a school bag (which they must purchase from the school), an ID card and an unknown safety fee which is based bi-monthly. Together, all these things are worth Rs. 3000. Now, this is not even the worst part of the whole charade, that comes when you see what the school is charging as their monthly fee for nursery students.
Believe it or not, RGS has put Rs. 15, 138 as the monthly fee for a child that comes to learn ABC at max, along with mostly spending time similar to a day-care. The parents are bound to pay this amount, multiplied by 2 because the fee structure is based on the bi-monthly basis.
Which class of society can pay so much money to enroll their children in a Montessori program? Certainly nobody other than the most elite bands of our society. The school needs to take a grave look at the fee challan and then imagine how society would react to it.
The capitalist mentality runs rampant in the country and ‘education for all‘ looks like a lost cause. The differences that Pakistan’s education system creates between students of O/A Levels and Matriculation/Inter goes a long way, which starts as early as a Montessori school.