Parents of Global Bahasa Students Stage a Sit-In Protest

The parents of students at Global Bahasa Depok are outraged and growing restive. Having already paid for a years’ education for their children, they now find the school closed just a few months after it opened.

The closure of the school happened without any notification of parents at all. Moreover, two owners of the school called Walter Nagawijaya and Chris Suryo Wongso have now completely vanished and are not available at any of their phone numbers.

Firdaus, a customer of the business told Kompas, “We’ve lost all contact with the owner. The teachers here also haven’t been paid. They have already made an effort to find the owner, all to no avail.

Apparently, Global Bahasa Depok has been closed since January 2015. At first, the owner declared that he was having operational difficulties. But he swore he was searching for new funds to continue running the business.

“At first they promised that they would re-open in March. But until now, the school is still closed. By this time, we were supposed to have had a test to go up a level,” complained Firdaus.

It has been said that the administration center for Global Bahasa Depok is at Citra Grand Mall in Cibubur, another satellite suburb of Jakarta.

According to the parents of another student, Heru, the claim that the owner stopped teaching activities at the school because he was short of operational cash doesn’t make sense. He doesn’t believe that the owners have any shortage of money- quite the opposite, in fact.

For a year’s tuition, the cost is around 8 million rupiah. Based on the head count done by parents at the school, there are an estimated 509 students at the school, all of which have been cheated out of their promised education.

“Each student at the school has paid Rp 8 million. Therefore, the school owners are holding money worth around Rp 4 billion. To rent the shop-house for a year only costs around Rp 300 million. The salaries of the teachers and staff is only Rp 80 million for two months. Therefore, where did the remaining Rp 3.6 million go?” asked Heru.

(This article has been translated by me from the original, which appeared in Kompas newspaper.)

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