The President, National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools, Abayomi Otubela, says given the increase in the cost of fuelling, some schools would suspend bus services and parents would be advised to look for alternative means of transporting their wards to school.
Otubela spoke to our correspondent on the sidelines of the groundbreaking ceremony of NAPPS National Secretariat, Conference Centre and Apartment, in Bwari, Abuja.
Otubela said, “Undoubtedly, this is a challenging times for all, touching every sector of the economy, private schools not exempted. In response to these challenges, we came together as an association, reasoned and sought the contributions of experts regarding the situation. We realised that we need to tighten our belts to remain afloat.
“We decided that there was a need to reduce some activities that are not directly necessary to academic activities to reduce cost. We also agreed that we will focus only on core curricular activities that can make an immediate impact. It was also agreed that some of our social activities that involve financial expenses would be reduced, while we consider the suggestions to get staff quarters within the school environment to reduce transportation cost of teachers and other staff.”
Otubela said an increase in teachers’ salaries and other staff was inevitable, but cannot be implemented without a corresponding increase in school fees and other services.
He said parents and guardians should be prepared to pay more.
“Surely, parents would feel the impact of this decision. Many of our member schools have parked their school buses because of the huge cost of running them. Besides, it was never profitable. Parents would have to choose hostel facilities or find other means of bringing their children to school. But we are also looking at support from the government to secure a loan at a single-digit interest.
“We have suggested the establishment of an education bank where the government can make funds available for investors in the education sector to develop themselves and facilities,” he added.
The NAPPS President said private schools needed support.
“Unknown to many people, many of the private schools are running at a loss, while many are running as charity organisations,” he stated.