ST. LAWRENCE COLLEGE - RECEPTION - EDUCATION FEE REDUCTION
June 10th 2020
Attn: Mrs. Kiki Karakostas / Managing Director
St. Lawrence College, Anemon st.19442 Koropi, Attiki
Subject: Fee Reduction on Third Semester 2020
Dear Mrs. Karakostas,
This is a letter from the parents of the Reception Students.
We hope this letter finds you well in these challenging times and would like to take the opportunity to thank all of the St. Lawrence College staff for their efforts during this crisis. We acknowledge that our children are very happy with the school, teachers and atmosphere in general, and would like to continue studying at St. Lawrence College. We really appreciate that our children are able to attend school this June and can properly complete the school year, despite all the drawbacks and difficulties of online learning.
On March 10th it was announced to us that the government imposed restrictions on schools and ordered their prophylactic closures. Though there have been interactions with the teachers through online learning, the main burden of making this process work lay with the parents. In our opinion, the school (not the teachers) has not fulfilled, to the extent that was expected, what the parents have paid fees for.
In light of the existing situation, we, the parents, feel that it is unjustified that the school is demanding a full fee payment for the Third Term’s “Distance Learning Program” as many services which were paid for were not rendered. As such, we are writing this letter to request a partial reimbursement or credit on the school fees concerning the third semester of the academic year 2019-2020.
The reasons are highlighted below:
1) As per Ms. Good’s letter on March 11th, “Online learning in the primary school and nursery cannot possibly replicate the learning experience of our pupils in school.” The online learning platform is not a complete alternative, but rather a supplement to their education.
2) During the first 23 school days of distance learning (Wednesday March 11th to Friday April 10th), students only received homework via email and later through the Tapestry platform. The school significantly delayed the initialization of online learning (Microsoft Teams platform) for an entire month while other private schools had set up online learning within the first week.
3) Only after the Easter break did live lessons begin which lasted for 25 days (Monday April 27th to May 29th). These live lessons lasted up to 90 minutes a day, four days a week. In comparison, a normal school day usually lasts 6 and a half hours. This roughly translates to 18% of the time spent educating our children, or a mere 9% if we include the entire first month lost due to the delay in setting up the Microsoft Teams platform.
4) The students were not using the premises, utilities or facilities.
5) All extra-curricular activities were cancelled.
6) Parents were allocating 4-6 hours a day for each child, assisting them to complete their daily assigned lessons, provide resources, stationary and technology in addition to the added mental strain and pressure of working from home simultaneously.
7) Most families’ incomes have been severely disrupted due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The points above have been taken into consideration by many private schools around the world where appropriate discounts and reimbursements have already been issued. We find it unacceptable and very concerning that St. Lawrence College management has not only avoided to offer discounts and/or reimbursements to the parents, but we also find it disturbing that the school demands full payment for the third term.
We understand that the government has offered various rescue packages to schools, while many expenses and maintenance costs were reduced to a minimum during this period. We are also aware of discounts being applied to FS1 and FS2.
It is through this letter that we request the school management to review this serious issue and offer appropriate discounts, credits or reimbursements for the school fees during the lockdown period (March – May 2020) without further delay.
If it is difficult for the school to apply these returns for the current year, we are willing to accept credit for the next school year fees. For those parents that have prepaid the year and are leaving the school, we request reimbursement to be made accordingly.
These are difficult times for all of us, and we hope the school will cope effectively in the aftermath of the pandemic.
We look forward to receiving your prompt response.
Parents of Reception students of St. Lawrence College
CC Mr. Dimitris Karakostas / Business Manager
Ms. Emily Naoum / Registrar
Ms. Katerina Kanellopoulou / Chief Accountant
Mr. Nikos Latsis / Cashier