I then engaged her in a discussion, asking if her child went to that school. She answered in the affirmative. I asked for the school fees. She smiled, and said N203,000 with feeding and school bus. I exclaimed, saying it was just too high for that kind of primary school. My alarm caused the woman in front of her to turn and look at me. This second woman just kept sighing and shaking her head at me, trying to say "see this novice," with the continual shaking of her head. Me, I just kept exclaiming about how the price was too high for a neighbourhood church primary school.
Soon, the head-shaking woman got called to the counter, and later, the fees-paying woman, while I was still on the queue, being the foremost. I felt it was over, but from time to time, the head-shaking woman would turn, look at me, and shake her head. I was wondering what I did wrong. Was she the headmistress of the school I complained about? But she looked too young to be a headmistress. I started blaming myself.
Obviously, I had never had a child, or paid school fees for anyone in my entire life. I was a novice, and she let me know that clearly with her head-shaking gestures.
After some minutes, I got called to the counter, and started transacting. Few minutes later, I felt a hand on my back. I turned back, and saw head-shaking woman. She whispered to me. "My son is in nursery 1, and I pay 280,000 per term. Immediately, she walked away.
I called out to her saying, "which school is that?" She just walked away smiling, and never answered me. Her message was clear. "Fees are high. Suck it up, and stop complaining about the ones that are not even that high." I'm sure if she had a blog too, she'd have blogged about me.
I honestly think the government should start regulating fees, because this whole thing is turning into one very lucrative business for entrepreneurs, and the pressure is getting too high. Every Tom, Dick, and Harry is now opening schools, charging exorbitant prices, as long as they can get a building. Primary and secondary school fees range from N100,000 to 2 million naira per term. A term is about three months. It's just too much. Please, note I am not talking of universities here, but nursery, primary, and secondary schools.
I believe the reason the government don't have the confidence to regulate them is because their own schools suck really bad.
But still, something has to be done. We cannot continue this way.