Education Bosses have been defending their action to recover unpaid school fees owing to a Private school which closed last summer.
Local Parents in Wearside have been angered by demands for payment from a Debt Collection Agency relating to term fees for Sunderland High School. The Independent school closed last summer.
Pupils and their parents were left shocked when the schools owners ‘United Learning’ announced at the beginning of 2016 that they would be closing the doors on the 130 year old education establishment due to a drop in pupils.
Fees at the school were said to range between a whopping £2,300 to £3,200 per term
One parent who wanted to remain anonymous said that United learning had already caused enough upset and disruption in peoples lives without taking the recourse of Debt Collection.
The parent said “My children attended Sunderland High School and are still suffering psychological trauma due to the school closure and the loss of their community”
She continued “To add insult to injury, the company that closed the school has now employed the services of a debt recovery company to chase up any outstanding debts – It is deplorable”
United Learning, which has a number of independent schools across the UK took a different view.
“After the announcement of closure, the school was still open as normal but we reduced the normal notice period so that pupils could leave at Easter without being liable for extra term fees.
They continued “The overwhelming majority of parents have paid the fees due in full. They should not be subsidising those few who have not done so yet. The only source of income for an independent school is from the fees parents pay.”
“We are quite rightly therefore pursing payment of these outstanding fees so that money collected can be used for educational purposes in line with our objectives as a charity.”
Many Private schools turn to Debt Collection Agencies for the collection of unpaid term fees however this is viewed by many as an usual scenario given the schools closure.