Dubai's Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) has established some welcome tough rules to govern what fees schools can charge in the emirate, commented a UAE daily.
"Many schools in Dubai are run by companies for their shareholders' profit and such commercial enterprises should not be allowed to take advantage of parents desperate to give their children the best education they can find", said " Gulf News" in its today's editorial.
It is wrong that some schools are willing to find ways to dodge the legal limits on their fees. It is not right that schools charge a margin on ancillary services like supplying books or uniforms, or transport to and from the school. Such services should not be seen as a profit centre from which the school is able to increase its financial gain. Books and uniforms ought to come from third-party suppliers and the school management should not be claiming some supposed "handling" charges for these services. Transport is one of the highest cost components involved in sending children to school. It is often too expensive to organise the service, with vehicles being equipped with air conditioning and seat belts and properly monitored by a staff member, in addition to the driver. These costs should not be inflated by rapacious schools, the paper observed.
"No one wants more government control, but if the profit-making schools refuse to acknowledge their social responsibilities, they must be forced into compliance and the KHDA may need to require schools to offer such services at a cost", GN concluded.