'Withholding results illegal'

SCHOOLS that withhold the results of pupils who owe "school fees" could find themselves in trouble.

The KwaZulu-Natal department of education has urged parents to report schools that withhold results because of nonpayment since "it is illegal".

It was responding to calls from concerned parents who, because they were unable to pay school fees, were threatened with results not being released to them.

Provincial education MEC Senzo Mchunu, pictured, told Sowetan yesterday that the withholding of results because of nonpayment would not be tolerated.

"It is against the law. We will deal harshly with principals who do this knowing that it is unlawful," he said.

Parents were allegedly told that they would not receive their children's results when schools close on Friday if their fees have not been paid up.

A parent in Umlazi said a local school is known for withholding results. He alleged that the principal had again warned pupils owing school fees.

"The fees for the year is R100 but many parents cannot afford it," he said.

Mchunu said though the department had not received any official complaints, the matter would be investigated.