Saturday, 24 May 2008

MOE owes S$288 to foreign student

Hou Xiaoran left Singapore on 17th February 2002. Prior to her departure, a letter to terminate her studies in Chai Chee Secondary School was given to her form teacher. Hou Xiaoran's student pass and disembarkation card were returned to Immigration.

On 1st April 2003, I receive a letter from the Finance Division of MOE. Enclosed was a cheque of S$288 for refund of school and miscellaneous fees for Hou Xiaoran. I couldn't believe it.

I called Mrs Ng Kok Leong to inform her that Hou Xiaoran left Singapore a year ago. I asked her how then would the money be returned to Hou Xiaoran. Mrs Ng told me to return the cheque. The money would not be returned as Hou Xiaoran didn't have an account in Singapore any more. I offered to send the money to Hou Xiaoran but was rejected. I was told the Government would keep the money.

The Singapore Government is well-known for its efficiency and productivity, not for the Ministry of Education. The Finance Division took one year to refund excess fees paid by a foreign student who has already left Singapore. Incredible. I thought MOE is fully computerised.

Foreign student left Singapore on 17th Feb 2002
MOE tried to refund excess school fee only on 1st April 2003 - took 13 months 12 days to send notice and yet money was never refunded