By Our Reporters
As schools resume for a new term of another session, many parents and guardians are in panic on how to get their children’s school fees.
Most affected are parents whose wards are in private schools.
In Lagos state, school fees in public schools especially primary schools are almost free while there has been significant restructuring of the education system across the schools by the government to meet acceptable standard.
ECHONEWS discovered that for a child to be enrolled into public schools, the parent needs to provide N4,000 to register the student with N200 badge fee and N5,100 tax clearance of the parent.
However, many parents still resort to private schools out of ego, ignorance, competition and other factors.
Due to the economic situation and their financial capacity, many parents have to find a way to pay their children school fees.
Apart from school fees, most of the parents are not able to procure the needed books for their children.
For instance, ECHONEWS witnessed such situation at a particular private school in Ejigbo where a teacher was castigating a parent for complaining that her two children in primary three could not write A to Z as their colleagues.
The teacher, who got angry at the complaint, said the parent refused to buy a single book for the children to work with.
“Apart from the fact that she has not paid up their school fees, she has not bought a single book for the two children. What does she want them to work with? How would they learn how to write when they don’t have any book? I even told her to buy a book for one of them so that they could share it till she would be able to buy for the other child but still she has not and now come here to complain that her children cannot write A to Z. That is what we experience in private schools.”
Trying to get a loan to pay your child’school fees? Echonews did a study of the school fees loans market. Below are our findings:
Apart from parents who use the daily contributions , also called, “ajo” to fund their financial needs, co-operative loans provide temporary relief for parents seeking to settle school fees.
However for those willing to take the risk, banks have always had a personal loans window to meet urgent needs.
A few banks recently launched loan products with the guardians of students on their mind.
FCMB has a personal loan product, called Quick Loan that parents can use to settle their children’s school fees. It also has a study aids loan for parents whose children are abroad.
UBA has three categories of personal overdrafts which can help: According to UBA bank the Personal Overdraft is a short term facility that allows you to overdraw your current account for 6 months up to a maximum amount of =N=3 million. This means that subject to some terms, conditions and requirements, your bank account will be funded with the maximum of 3 million Naira (Approximately $8,250)
Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC, a member of Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC, recently introduced payment products to make it easy for parents to pay their school fees in time.
It also launched the EZ cash loan/advance to enable parents who are cash strapped take advantage of the EZ cash loan which gives access to loans, in less than a minute, to pre-approved customers.
The bank also offers a product called SALAD, which is salary advance for workers.
Salaried employees can also take advantage of Salary Advance (SALAD), another of the bank’s short term loans that are quick and easy to get.
Zenith Bank Plc, has introduced a new loan scheme called Zenith Children’s Account Education (ZECA) Loan, created to assist parents and guardians pay their children/wards’ school fees as the new school session resumes in September.
The bank said in a statement that the loan offering will be paid directly into the account of the beneficiary’s school, but parents/guardians would have to open a ZECA account for their children/wards at any of its branches to enjoy it.
At First Bank, Loan applicants are expects to maintain a Salary account with FirstBank. You can borrow Loan amount of up to 50% of net monthly income.
Tenor is 30days or next pay day [whichever comes first]. Maximum single obligor limit is N500,000 and interest rate is 2.5%flat collected upfront. Other charges are
Management fee (1.0% flat ) and Credit Life Insurance (0.50%).
Access Bank also has a product, Advance for School Fees, designed to provide parents/guardians with short–term financing to cover tuition fees for their children/wards. It is also ideal for financing of undergraduate study, postgraduate study and professional examinations.
To access the facility, your account must be domiciled in the bank and letters of admission of the child and the employment of the parent must be submitted.
A similar salary advance product is also on the shelf of Polaris Bank.
Called the Polaris Salary Advance,it is a customer-led the product that enables employees to geup to 50% of their net monthly salary to meet basic needs before their next payday.
The bank said that it will enable consumers meet pressing financial needs such as paying their child/ward school fees.emergencies requiring funding, bill payments, amongst other needs