Two months later, after lunch one day, Xiaoran asked for permission to shop for Bata white shoes. She had just started school and her 2 pairs of white shoes were bought just 2 months ago. She said Ms Loh wanted the whole class to wear only white canvas shoes which must not have any other colour or accessories on them. Xiaoran's shoes had some white trimmings on them.
The shoes failed the teacher's expectation. So my frightened ward went shoe hunting. She spent one whole afternoon searching from Parkway Parade to Suntec City to Orchard Road. She came back that evening happily with 2 pairs of all white, plain canvas shoes.
I had another Indonesian ward in the same school, in Secondary 2. Her teacher didn't make the students wear all white canvas shoes. This ward's shoes had blue trimmings. So this is not the school's policy. Someone made her own rule.
Before my ward was admitted to the school, she was asked to give a donation. The Principal, Mohd Said Bin Jaafar, assured us,"This is a one-time payment." Several months later, Xiaoran came home with a letter appealing for contribution to the school by advertising in the school magazine.
Ms Loh told the foreign students, everyone had to buy a one-page advertisement space. I spoke to Xiaoran's father. He didn't want to advertise as he had already donated a sum of money to the school. I returned the letter, turning down her request.
The letter came back again with the message,"All foreign students must place an advertisement."
I returned the letter again with a note referring to the Principal's assurance. My ward was the only foreign student in her class who didn't advertise in the school magazine. Ms Loh took it badly. I wonder,"Was someone trying to excel in this fund-raising exercise?"
The worst nightmare commenced after the June holidays.............