Jayapura, 3/4 (Jubi) – Three schools in Papua were found to have collected illegal fees from the students for the National Examinations.
The Indonesian Assistant Ombudsman for Papua, Ismail Saleh Marzuki, said at a press conference in Jayapura that the government would investigate the finding. “This is not right. This illegal collection shouldn’t have happened in Papua, because there are funds allocated from the Special Autonomy budget, School Operations Allowances (BOS) and other funds from the Ministry of Education,” Marzuki said on Thursday (3/4).
For further investigation, he has met the Head of Education Department of Jayapura City, Robert Betaubun who said his office wasn’t responsible for collections charged to the students by a number of schools. He said he believed that the the Education Department was guilty by omission.
“We will report our findings to the Mayor of Jayapura and the Police of Jayapura. This is a crime,” he said.
A student’s mother said illegal fees were collected at one of pilot schools in Papua. She said the school did not give prior information to the parents about the fees.
“They just called us when everything had been set up. In addition, the school often mentioned the School Committee has approved those collections,” she said.
“Sometimes I thought it was not right. But I was afraid objecting would harm my child, so I just followed their demand,” she said.
A vocational school teacher, Angel Bertha Sinaga, said her school was also collecting an exam fee.
“We collected fee for practical exams and the School Committee and the students’ parents agreed. We offered two options whether the students or school who prepare the practical materials,” she said. (Jubi/Arjuna/rom)