'No child should be turned away over fees'


HARARE - The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) has urged school authorities to respect the laws of the country and ensure that no child is turned away for nonpayment of fees.

This comes as the human rights lobby group has received reports from parents and guardians in both rural and urban areas about children being turned away due to failure to pay fees.

In a statement, ZLHR said chasing children is unconstitutional and undermines policy pronouncements by the ministry of Primary and Secondary Education.

“Undoubtedly the majority of those who fall victim to this practice are children from disadvantaged families and acquiring education can be the only way out of a life of poverty.

“The ministry has in the past categorically denounced exclusion of children for non-payment of school fees. Turning away children from the classroom undermines the principle of the best interest of a child, a standard prescribed and emphasised in the constitution of Zimbabwe, and in human rights instruments that Zimbabwe has voluntarily ratified,” ZLHR said.

ZLHR has called on government to issue and implement a directive to allow children to attend school whether or not the fees have been paid.

 

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