The Negative Impact of Preventing Students from Writing Exams Due to Unpaid School Fees: A Plea to Vice-Chancellor Professor M. O. Iwe

Dear Vice-Chancellor Professor M. O. Iwe,

I hope this note finds you in good health and high spirits. I am writing to express my deep concern regarding the current practice of preventing students with unpaid school fees from writing exams at Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike. While I understand the importance of resolving outstanding tuition payments, I believe this approach is inhumane and counterproductive to the overall growth and well-being of our university community. It is necessary to apply the four-way test in everything we do; Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will it build goodwill and better friendship? Is it beneficial to all concerned?

  1. Hindering Academic Progress:
    Denying students the opportunity to write exams simply because they have outstanding fees perpetuates a cycle of academic stagnation. Education is a fundamental right, and access to examinations should not be impeded due to financial constraints. By withholding this opportunity, we inherently undermine the academic progress of students who may already be struggling financially.
  2. Emotional and Psychological Impact:
    The psychological toll of this policy cannot be overlooked. Students facing financial difficulties often experience anxiety, stress, and feelings of inferiority. By preventing them from writing exams, we further exacerbate these emotional burdens, negatively impacting their mental health and overall well-being. We have to support students during challenging times, rather than adding to their burden.
  3. Retention Rates and Institutional Reputation:
    The primary goal of any university should be the success and graduation of its students. However, the policy of stopping students from writing exams due to unpaid fees may lead to increased dropout rates. Students who are unable to proceed academically due to financial penalties might consider alternative educational institutions or abandon their studies altogether. This diminishes the university’s reputation and hampers our ability to attract and retain talented students.
  4. Positive Alternative Approaches:
    Rather than preventing students from writing exams, the university could adopt more compassionate and effective strategies to address financial issues. Some of these alternatives include:
    • a) Offering flexible payment plans: Implementing installment schemes or extended deadlines, supporting students in managing their fees more effectively.
    • b) Establishing financial aid programs: Increasing the availability of scholarships, grants, or bursaries to support students who face financial hardships.
    • c) Encouraging communication and support: Establishing a dedicated financial aid office to guide and counsel students on available options and resources.

Vice Chancellor Professor M. O. Iwe, I urge you to consider the negative implications of the current policy and reassess the approach to handling unpaid school fees, and biometrics issues and peacefully resolve the ongoing student protest at Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike. Let us prioritize the growth, well-being, and success of our student body by enacting policies that support their educational advancement, rather than inhibit it.

Together, we can create an inclusive and supportive learning environment where students are encouraged to excel academically, regardless of their financial circumstances. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Yours Sincerely,
Black Boy.

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I'm Dav-Oz, and  I'm the Chief Editor of The Dav-Oz Blog, a graphic designer and upcoming fashion designer.

I'm just your regular young Nigerian lad with dreams and hope for a better future.

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