The story appears on

Page A4

January 12, 2013

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro » Public Services

Tougher law draws ire of schools, students

BOTH local driving schools and their students are complaining in the wake of a new, stricter traffic law launched this year.

The students say they are being told to pay more to complete their courses. They said the price hikes are unjust because they are not just for new students, but those who already have paid the tuition and enrolled.

The schools, however, say that since the pass rate for the driving examination has hit a record low, the learning process of each student is extended and their costs are rising. They also say that local rules limiting the number of students who can take a road test are unfair.

Local pricing authorities have not yet intervened.

As of Thursday, many driving schools have begun to raise their tuition from around 4,500 yuan to around 7,000 yuan.

Students from the Hongyuan driving school in Hongkou District complained they were asked to pay an extra 500 to 1,500 yuan for their courses and that otherwise, they wouldn't be allowed to continue the courses, although their tuitions would be refunded.

"I think there should be another way, and it's not right to ask us to pay more since we've already paid," a student said.

"We're still negotiating with the students. For us we didn't want the tuition to rise either. It's a market reflection," an employee of the school surnamed Zheng said.

"Before the new regulation, each of our teachers could handle 36 to 40 students a year, but right now each one of us can only take fewer than 20."

Hongyuan was not the only school to charge extra tuition, as some schools in Minhang, Pudong and Baoshan districts had also started to charge enrolled students more.

Local pricing authorities said last month that while they expected prices to rise, they would monitor any inappropriate or arbitrary price increase.

Students who signed contracts with the driving schools should not worry about extra charges as they should be protected by the law, according to Liu Chunquan, a local lawyer.

"Clearly the schools' request is ungrounded and if they stop the course or refund the money without the agreement of the student, they will be regarded as unilaterally terminating the contract," Liu said.

"The cost rising due to the new policy should be part of the business or operation risk to the company, which should not be transferred to the customers."

Students could simply ask them to fulfill their contract and finish the course according to the terms, Liu suggested.

Teachers of Hongyuan complained that the price increase also upset themselves as they will lose many clients with the price as high as 7000 yuan.

"No one wants higher tuition," Zheng said. "The whole industry is threatened by the new policy, not because it's more difficult for the students but because some regulations are just unreasonable."

Zheng said only 60 percent of the students who pass the written tests can immediately take the new, stricter road test, while 40 percent have to wait, according to new local vehicle authority rules.

"It's pointless. It's unfair to the other 40 percent and to us as well," Zheng said.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend