August 11, 2020

WASSCE candidates hotel lodging saga: We were concerned about students’ safety — Grace Schools

Parents protest, WASSCE candidates

The protesting parents at the gate of the school on Monday.

The protesting parents at the gate of the school on Monday.

By Elizabeth Osayande

The management of Grace Schools, Gbagada, Lagos, has stated that the decision not to open the boarding house was for the safety of the students, as against the news making round that parents were directed to take their children to the hotel to lodge during the forthcoming West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination, WASSCE.

Members of Parents Teachers Association, PTA, of Grace High School, who held a protest at the school’s gate on Monday, told Vanguard that students, who are preparing for the forthcoming WASSCE, were advised to lodge in hotels to meet up with the timing of the exam.

However, in a statement on Tuesday, the school said their priority was the students’ safety and also denied extorting money from parents to the tune of N1.5 million for hostel accommodation for the students, as reported by some media (not Vanguard).

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In the statement, the school’s public relations consultant, Mr. Ayodeji Ayopo, said legal actions would be taken against those alleged to have spread the rumour.

The statement read: “We unequivocally put it on record that Grace Schools has not collected such unreasonable amounts from any of our parents in the course of resuming academic activities after the COVID-19 lockdown.

“The children only resumed school first time on Monday, August 9, since the forced closure of schools in March.

“All the students resumed as day students and none have paid any boarding fees.

“We request the rumormongers to present evidence of payment and who they paid the alleged N1.5 million to, or which hotel the children were camped in.

“We believe this baseless story is sponsored by aggrieved people who could not accept our decision not to open the boarding house without ironclad safety measures being put in place.

“It is wicked, immature and uncalled for.

“We have sought a legal modality to investigate those sponsoring the malicious rumour and the blogs used to magnify the slanderous, malicious and defaming lies.

“Grace Schools has thrived on a long-standing record of integrity, credibility and honesty.

“As an institution whose teaching is hinged on honesty, and good moral conduct, we eschew any vice that may soil the hard-earned and long-won credibility that the school is known for.

“It is saddening that a media platform can jump at junk stories and in unconcerned desperation publish such without following the basic code of journalism—investigate.

“We also appeal to the general public to disregard the story as a deliberate attempt to create an unnecessary crisis for this noble institution.”