PARENTS VENT ANGER OVER CLOSING OF INT’L SCHOOL

The Jakarta Post, Jakarta | City News – Monday, June 09, 2008

 

Parents in Jakarta should be careful about sending their children to national-plus or international schools, warns a parent of a John Calvin International School student.

“Parents should first check the school’s permission status and curriculum,” Rizal Panggabean, a representative for parents, told The Jakarta Post on Sunday.

 

“Don’t make the wrong decision about your children’s education.”

 

The father of five, whose children were all enrolled in the John Calvin International School, had to look for another school for his daughters after it was temporarily closed down.

 

The school has been officially closed for an unspecified period.

 

Parents have been given the option of moving their children to another international standard school, Saint Peter’s School, which is under the same management as John Calvin, board of directors representative Andre Legoh said.

 

A letter announcing the suspension, signed by Andre and president director Eko Nugroho, was sent to parents last Friday.

 

John Calvin will be the first national-plus school in the capital to close down.

There are 60 national-plus schools in Indonesia, 27 of which are in Jakarta, according to 2007 data from the National Education Ministry.

 

The John Calvin International School in Pulomas, East Jakarta, opened in 2007 and had a total of 110 students at the elementary and secondary levels.

 

According to the school’s website, it was merged with Saint Peter’s School in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta, effective June 1.

 

Rizal said he regretted his decision to send his five daughters to the school.

 

“I feel deceived. I don’t want to send my children to Saint Peter’s School because I am afraid the same thing will happen again,” he said.

 

Rizal, who spent a total of around Rp 272 million (US$29,247.30) on his children’s tuition fees for one year, said he would be more careful in choosing a school for them in the future.

 

Ferry A. Karo Karo Sitepu, another parent, voiced similar opposition to sending his children to Saint Peter’s School.

 

“My two children recently took entrance examinations for two other international schools. I won’t send my children to the recommended school because I don’t want to be a victim again,” he said.

 

He said he had moved his children from Marsudirini and Strada schools to enter the British-curriculum-based John Calvin because he wanted them to be in an English-speaking environment.

 

Andre said he believed many parents would agree to send their children to Saint Peter’s School because it also was of International standard and was located in the same area.

 

He said parents with students at John Calvin would not need to pay any development fees if they sent their children to Saint Peter’s School, while those parents who had paid the development fees and chose another school might not get their money back.

 

“I think the board of directors has carried out its responsibilities. The students can continue their studies in a school of the same quality.

 

“The reason for choosing Saint Peter’s school is because it has some of the same members on its board of directors,” he said. (ind)