December 5, 2013
Woman claims ... SCHOOL TRIED TO RIP ME OFF
Chad Bryan, STAR Writer
A woman who applied to attend a private institution in St Andrew was left fuming over the treatment she received at the hands of the administration when she demanded a refund.
The female student explained that she went and registered at the institution, paying subject, laboratory, uniform and registration fees amounting to approximately $19,000, in order to sit the May/June Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) exams next year.
In late August, she attended an orientation where she was told she would not be placed at the institution situated in central St Andrew.
Instead, she and other students were told they would have to attend another campus. However, she claimed the school could not say where exactly it would be located, and it took her two days to find.
The student further claimed that when she found the school it had none of the things it had advertised for comfort. There were no air-conditioning and the spacing was small. When she started classes, some clashed and she ended up having to do weekend classes that she had not signed up for.
On September 21, she had to stop going to classes, after she was told that she would have to do biology in two years, which she had been told originally would have been done in one year.
It was then she decided she had enough and went to the Half-Way Tree-based institution to get a refund. She said she was told that she would have had her refund within six weeks. After the time had passed, she claimed administrators gave her the runaround as they told her the refund authorisation would have to come from the principal, who was never in office when she called or visited.
The woman stated that she went to the police, who later called the school. They too had been told that the principal had been unavailable.
The woman alleges that when she finally saw the principal, who had been in a classroom, she was rebuffed.
"A student closed the door in my face and I told her not to do that. The principal then called security to have me removed," she said.
She claimed that during this incident, she was pushed, grabbed and assaulted by the security guard. She then called the police who took her and the security guard to the Half-Way Tree Police Station.
The student was eventually given back $10,000.
When contacted, the principal of the institution said he had been aware of the matter and that it had been dealt with.
"I am aware, yes, and it was brought to the attention of the police, and, to the best of my knowledge, they settled it. She also got the refund. She really had started the classes and she asked for the refund after starting the classes, it was actually prorated," he said.
When asked about the alleged claims of a police officer about reports of being ripped off, the principal said the claims were baseless.
"That's not true. I'm not aware of that and the police cannot make those accusations. That would be false, it cannot be true," he said.