March 15, 2017
When Esther Kinyanjui approached Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington to help her son Edwin get back into school, the local MP realised urgent action was needed.
Mrs Frecklington took up the fight for Edwin, a student of Kingaroy State High School, after his mother was told by the Education Department in Brisbane that he could no longer attend school unless she paid her international student fees upfront.
“Mrs Kinyanjui moved to Kingaroy from South Australia early in 2017 to take up work as a registered nurse, and Edwin began Year 10 school at Kingaroy State High School this year,” Mrs Frecklington said.
“However, Mrs Kinyanjui was hit with a massive $9500 bill for his school fees which she was told she had to pay upfront, otherwise, he could not come to school.
“Edwin is a very bright student who loves school and both he and his mum were devastated.”
Mrs Kinyanjui was willing to pay the bill in instalments but the Education Department wouldn’t allow it.
“A young person must be able to go to school, so I immediately wrote to the Minister for Education (Kate Jones) asking for Edwin to be able to return to school while an outcome could be negotiated,” Mrs Frecklington said.
“It was a Parliament week, so I also took the opportunity to speak directly to the Minister about Edwin’s case.
“It took a further three weeks but we were able to get Edwin back to school.
“It was wonderful to meet with him and his mum and talk about his bright future.
“The family are from Kenya originally and are looking for a new start here in Kingaroy. I wish them all the best and I know Kingaroy will offer a warm welcome to them both as they start their future together in this great part of the world.”