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July 5, 2013

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Parents told to watch out for education scams

THE city's consumer protection watchdog yesterday warned parents to be vigilant over education scams after a series of complaints since summer vacation started.

Some education and training agencies delay classes, change teachers randomly or shut down without notice after collecting tuition from parents, the Shanghai Consumer Rights Protection Commission said.

A man surnamed Gu said he paid 18,000 yuan (US$2,903) for six mathematics classes for his daughter ahead of this year's college entrance exam in June. But his daughter found the quality of classes was far below what the agency had promoted. The institution also never provided six classes.

Gu asked for a refund for the six classes, but the institution never responded.

Some agencies exaggerate the impact of their classes, and parents should check their qualifications carefully and let their children attend a trial session before paying, the commission said.

A woman surnamed Yao complained she could not get a refund after paying for English courses even though the training center promised an unconditional refund if students and parents were not satisfied with the courses.

Yao asked for a refund after three weeks and was told a 1,700 yuan fee would be charged for processing.

The commission said parents should ask for receipts and keep advertisement leaflets in case a dispute arises.


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