ESF announces rare freeze in school fees - RTHK
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ESF announces rare freeze in school fees

2020-03-24 HKT 12:42
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  • King George V is one of 22 ESF schools where fees for next year will be frozen at this year's levels. File Photo: RTHK.
    King George V is one of 22 ESF schools where fees for next year will be frozen at this year's levels. File Photo: RTHK.
Belinda Greer speaks to RTHK's Richard Pyne
The English Schools Foundation (ESF) has announced that it will not increase its school fees in the next academic year, freezing them at the current rates for the first time in years.

In a letter to parents, the foundation's chief executive Belinda Greer said these are "unprecedented times" and she understands that events of the past year – from the mass social unrest to the Covid-19 pandemic – have placed a heavy burden on families.

"You have had to cope with in-school class suspensions of a type not seen in a generation, you have faced an economic slowdown that could well end up to be unprecedented in its scale and, of course, you have had to deal with the anxiety of your family living through a time that is often hard to comprehend", she wrote.

Greer said the ESF wants to play its part in supporting students and families when the recovery process begins.

The organisation is the largest provider of English-language international education in the city, running 22 schools with more than 18,000 students.

On Monday, it announced that IB and GCSE exams due to take place in April and May had been cancelled, while IGCSE exams were partially cancelled due to the virus outbreak.

The ESF said that for cancelled exams, the relevant exam boards will put in place “a process that ensures that every student receives an award that reflects their performance over the course of the programme.”

Classes at all kindergartens, primary schools, and secondary schools in Hong Kong have been suspended since the Lunar New Year holiday in a bid to stem the spread of the virus.