The high risk of coronavirus outbreak has forced nationwide school closures. Therefore, there are many legal issues that need clarification for parents. Because of closures mandated by governments in an attempt to slow the spread of Coronavirus it is decided to continuing education through EBA (Education Information Network) in public schools. However, the situation is different for almost every private school. Therefore, it is recommended that parents act according to their own situation:
1. Due to the closure of the schools, my child's private school has switched to distance education through its system, but I don't think it is as effective as the education given at school, what are my rights?
In the event that the distance education system does not meet the education expected from private educational institutions as complete and flawless, it will be possible to request a price reduction in the rate of disrupted service according to Turkish Law of Obligations Article 137 since the expectations of parents when signing contracts with private schools are not just that their children take basic classes. The content of the contracts is already more than that. During the distance education, parents will be able to request refund at the rate of service disruption since they cannot benefit from the many opportunities that schools promised. Parents, for example, who pay high fees to the school due to the opportunities such as gym, pool, music courses, practical robotics courses, can claim partly refund of the school fee by applying to the consumer court, claiming that they did not receive these services.
2. Due to the closure of the schools, my child's private school has switched to distance education through EBA; can I request a refund of the school fee?
The distance education through EBA is provided by the Ministry of Education for free. Therefore, there is no need to pay any fees to the private school for the education provided by Ministry of Education. If the school fee is paid in advance, the refund of the fee for the duration of distance education can be requested because the private school has been enriched for no reason by taking the fee for the service it does not provide.
3. Can I request a refund from institutions that provide preschool education?
The services provided by institutions such as pre-primary schools, kindergartens, nursery schools, play schools have been interrupted due to the measures taken within the scope of combating the coronavirus epidemic. Due to both the age of the children and the nature of the service provided it is not possible to switch the services provided by these institutions to the distance services. For this reason, the refund of the entire fee related to preschool education can be requested by citing the impossibility of performance according to Turkish Law of Obligations Article 136.
4. How can I get a refund for transportation, food and dormitory fees?
Parents who do not deliver these services do not have to pay the fees of them. If the fee is paid, it is clear that they can get a refund. Parents can request the refund of the fee by applying to Consumer Council or Consumer Court, depending on the amount of the fee for the service.