27 October 2016
Many kindergartens charge high fees for  uniforms, snacks and even applications for admission. Photo: GovHK
Many kindergartens charge high fees for uniforms, snacks and even applications for admission. Photo: GovHK

Kindergartens make a killing on miscellaneous fees

Parents paid higher miscellaneous fees for their children studying in kindergartens last year.

Based on information from the Education Bureau’s “Profile of Kindergartens and Kindergarten-cum-Child Care Centres” published on Tuesday, ELH International Kindergarten in Sha Tin charged the highest at HK$9,600, 30 percent higher than the previous high, Apple Daily reported.

Parents of ELH pupils were asked to pay HK$1,500 to HK$2,000 for a winter school uniform, while textbooks and exercise books cost HK$2,000 and HK$3,000, respectively.

The Education Bureau’s list covers the various fees levied by some 990 kindergartens in Hong Kong, including application fees, miscellaneous fees and other admission charges.

Other kindergartens which are considered charging relatively high miscellaneous fees included Abiding Kindergarten in Yuen Long, which charged HK$5,539 last year, Greenfield English (International) Kindergarten in Ma On Shan which charged HK$5,000 for textbooks, as well as St. Mark’s Church Bradbury Kindergarten in Ho Man Tin, which charged HK$3,000 for snacks.

The Church of Christ in China Wanchai Church Kindergarten charged HK$4,707 as miscellaneous fees, one of the lowest among the schools surveyed.

Other kindergartens cited for their low charges include Rosaryhill School Kindergarten, which charged only HK$190 for tea time snacks for the entire year, and Tin Wan Methodist Kindergarten in the Southern District, which did not charge for snacks.

The Education Bureau said it allowed 44 kindergartens to levy application fees higher than the prescribed ceilings last year.

German Swiss International School Hong Kong’s kindergarten section levied a whopping HK$3,700 on parents for submission of an application for admission.

Hong Kong Professional Teachers Union president Fung Wai-wah said the fees charged by kindergartens varied considerably as the Education Bureau could not regulate the charging schemes of private, for-profit schools.

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