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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:19 pm 
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Unfortunately our appeal for GS failed last month. I had accepted a place at Inde School for my DD, but having reviewed that decision have decided my DD will have a lot more opportunities at the local comprehensive where she will be put into a class according to ability right from entry, whereas the Inde School don't do this. In addition, I have another child at the Independent in question and have not been happy with progress. I am also not happy with the politics that seem to go on, whereby a child is favoured simply because their parents are paying more money into the school.

Help? I have lost my deposit of just over £1,000, which is fine and totally expected, But I have now received a letter from the bursar to say that they will shortly be invoicing me for the first term's fees too, which is another £3,000. I am sure they have probably already filled the vacant position as they keep a waiting list, surely they can't expect me to pay another £3,000. Help, please can anyone advise, I literally have felt sick since reading the letter. :shock:


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:31 pm 
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Seems harsh - you could say you will consider handing in notice and removing your other child if they don't waive this ..


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:36 pm 
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They're under a duty to mitigate their loss - which means they're under an obligation to take all reasonable steps to fill the place you're not taking up. Only if they don't manage to fill the place can they even begin to think about asking you for the money and even then I'd tell them to take a running jump. I'd be very worried about a school that can't fill a place from a waiting list with two months notice!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:39 pm 
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I do know when we signed our contract accepting DD's place at indie it was explicit in the terms and conditions that a term's notice needed to be given to withdraw your child.

As we did not give a term's notice to withdraw her, we then had to cough up the £4,000.

I suspect very much this is what happened to you.

Did you read the small print?

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:47 pm 
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It sounds like it is a contractual term of the contract that you have to give a term's notice.

It is also likely that there is a liquidated damages clause entitling the school to invoice you for a full term.

If so then the school is under no duty to mitigate as you owe them a debt.

If there is no liquidated damages clause in the contract then the school is under a duty to mitigate.

Take advice from a Solicitor. It may cost £150 but could save you £4k


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:16 pm 
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Thank you everyone for all your help.

Obiterdicta - I can't seem to see that the contract mentions a liquidated damages clause, but maybe it is worded in such a way that this is covered.

The letter received today says "that the school requires one full term's notice that a pupil is going to leave. This system is common to virtually all independent schools and is a vital part of our budgeting procedures". I suppose I could argue that my DD wasn't actually a pupil at the school, having never started. Anything is worth a try.

I just feel rather angry that the school can profit in such a way and it does seem greedy as they have already had and kept the £1,055 deposit.

I will draft a letter up in response and let you all know how I get on. Snowdrops, so sorry to hear that you have been stung too for £4,000, it really is a disgrace!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:18 pm 
Surely they should deduct any deposit you have paid? I think strictly speaking you are liable for the first term's fees, but if a term's fees is £3K then you should only need to pay a further £2K. Also, I bet if you said you are withdrawing DC2 for financial reasons, and you would also have to withdraw DC1 if they charge you such a huge amount, they might well think again rather than lose both DCs.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:25 pm 
Anxious1 wrote:
I am also not happy with the politics that seem to go on, whereby a child is favoured simply because their parents are paying more money into the school.



Have just noticed this startling comment! Do you mean some parents voluntarily pay over and above the fees just to curry favour with the school? :shock:


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:11 pm 
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Hi KES parent, thank you for your response, thats a good point and I will ensure that the deposit is taken off when the final invoice arrives.

Sorry if my comment startled you, I should have explained better. I meant if a parent is paying for a few children at the same school, they are treated differently, and more allowances [tolerances] seem to be extended to their children.

Apologies if I sound very cynical, but I really have had my eyes opened over the past few months to the politics that seem to go on at this particular Independent school and have to say that this has greatly influenced my decision to withdraw DD.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:17 pm 
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Anxious 1, we haven't been 'stung' for anything.

The terms and conditions were there in black and white in the contract when we signed it. Our daughter has never attended the school either. We were using the place at indie as an insurance policy.

Whilst we could do with the £4,000 in our pocket, we cannot complain about something we knew about and signed for.

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