St. Peters Lutheran School Students Protest on Graduation Day; Say School Shortchanged Them on Graduation Fee

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MONROVIA — The 23rd graduation ceremony of the St. Peter’s Lutheran High School in Sinkor was on Sunday delayed for hours after graduating seniors refused to march in the hall accusing the school’s administration of “dubbing them”.

The program, which was slated for 10:am, was delayed for nearly two hours as graduating students protested a refund of their money they had paid to the administration to procure gowns and medals.

“We’re not entering in the hall for any graduation ceremony until they (administration) pay back our money or provide our gown and medal. You can’t dub an entire graduating class in this form and manner, we should get results before we enter in the hall,” a graduating student was heard telling his colleagues as they staged their protest.

The Administration had reportedly requested each graduating student to pay US$175 for a gown and medal but failed to provide the items on graduation day blaming importers they had contracted for the embarrassment.

It forced the school’s administration to take a difficult decision to sign a promissory note to refund students’ money on 2 April.

A copy of the promissory note reads: “The Administration of the St. Peter’s Lutheran High School has agreed to refund the payment of the students gown and medal. The amount of the gown is $20.USD and the medal is $3.5USD. The payment will be done in one-week time, as of today’s date to April 2, 2022.”

The chairman of the school’s Board, Arthur Loryoun, said the school entered into a contract with a firm to import the items for graduation but haven’t arrived yet.

Though he did not disclose the name of the firm, Loryoun named diplomat covers, medals, and gowns, among others that should have arrived from China before the graduation.

“Because the medals and gowns should’ve being used on the day of the graduation but we couldn’t get hold of them, so we committed ourselves in refunding the students’ money for the two items and plead with them that they will get their diploma cover as soon as they are here,” he explained. 

After an intervention from the Liberia National Police the protesting students agreed to allow the process to go on wearing their uniform instead of gowns.

FrontPageAfrica observed that due to the students’ desperation for graduating in gown, photographers at the event began renting gowns for a sum of LD$ 50, and at the same time placing a charge of LD$ 150 to take a single photo in a gown 

“We don’t have problem with paying the amount so that our kids can take their pictures and be happy, our kids happiness is what we want and not what happening in the school,” a parent of graduate noted.

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