WARREN Park 1 Primary School came under fire yesterday with parents and guardians of pupils enrolled at the institution fuming over the expulsion of their children for failing to produce gate passes which are their entry tickets into the school premises.
A gate-pass is issued to a pupil after the parent or guardian pays an extra US$5 per child per month after paying the school fees.
The gate passes come in different colours depending on the colour of the class in which the child is admitted.
There was chaos at Warren Park with pupils crowding outside the school gate while a security guard was admitting those with gate passes.
Some children could be seen going home while others were going to the school with their parents or guardians for possible negotiations with the school authorities or to pay the incentive so that the children be allowed entry into the school premises.
The parents had no kind words for the school authorities as they accused the school of swindling them of their hard-earned money.
The security guard said he was acting according to the orders he was given by the school authorities and denying the children entry was a reminder that incentives for July were due.
A parent Mrs Tendai Moyo said she was shocked to see her daughter coming home saying a new gate pass was needed.
“This issue of making us pay extra money should come to an end. We have been made to pay extra money for us children to be allowed to enter the school premises so that they can learn. Towards the end of every month these children are sent back home if they do not have gate passes,” she said.
Another Parent Mrs Francisca Matonzi had no kind words for the school authorities as she pleaded with the Government to intervene.
“We are tired of having our children being sent home every month because of the US$5 which needed to be paid. This is totally unacceptable and the Government should do something about it. Not all of us can afford to pay extra money every month,” she said.
Mrs Talent Mashiri echoed the same sentiments and the situation was leaving her with no choice but to transfer her son to another school.
“I am fed up with this issue of having my son coming home because of gate passes. He has missed a lot of lessons because sometimes will not have the money for the gate-pass. The only option I have is to transfer him to a school where extra incentives are not needed because this is daylight robbery,” she said.
Director of communications and advocacy in the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education Mr Taungana Ndoro said the Government was sending a team to probe the allegations at the school.
“We are sending an investigation team immediately. No child is to be refused access to education under the Constitution,” he said. Herald