Dec 8, 2009
The director of Bak Touk primary school in Phnom Penh said the school had given its teachers permission to charge each pupil 500 riel (12 cents) per day, but claimed the suspended teachers regularly charged twice that amount.
'I repeatedly warned them about taking (too much) money from students, but they didn't listen,' school director Yim Sokheng told the Cambodia Daily newspaper.
Under Cambodian law, primary and secondary education is free, but low civil service wages mean teachers either take other jobs to make ends meet or extort money from students.
Yim Sokheng told the newspaper that the school's 166 teachers are paid cash every day by students. The 500-riel daily limit was imposed following a directive from the Education Ministry.