Samer, 18, Salim, 16, Reina, 13, and Raneem, 10 have already lost a school year, and are yet to get transfer papers two weeks into the new academic year. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: A father of four in Sharjah needs urgent help to pay a Dh30,000 tuition fee debt in order to get his children back in school.

Ehsan Fa’oor, a Palestinian on a Lebanese passport, owes the amount to his children’s previous school, which has since shut down, and they won’t release paperwork for the children to join a new school until the outstanding bill is settled.

Ehsan Fa’oor

Samer, 18, Salim, 16, Reina, 13, and Raneem, 10, missed a year of school last year and Fa’oor desperately wants to avoid the same fate this year despite already being two weeks into the new term.

Fa’oor, a UAE resident of 40 years, lost his job as an archive clerk in 2015 when his company owner died and his visa was cancelled. He tried to find a new job but couldn’t and due to a travel ban for debt he couldn’t leave the country either.

Attempts to move the children and their mother to Syria in 2010 backfired with the outbreak of war and they returned the following year.

In 2017, they were evicted from their flat for failure to pay rent, and were left living out of a car, until they could find a more permanent solution.


debt in fees to landlord and fines for overstaying

Now having availed amnesty for himself, Fa’oor is on a six month working visa and has managed to find a job that pays Dh4,000 a month, but that’s only enough to cover monthly expenses. His children had been put onto his wife’s visa, which has now expired and he can’t afford to pay the Dh500 fee each, outside of amnesty, plus Dh25 a day charges, to switch their status to legal.

Currently in Dh73,000 debt for fees owed to the landlord and fines for overstaying, Fa’oor says he just needs help to pay the Dh30,000 bill to his children’s old school in order for them to release the papers.

“I can’t have them miss another year of school,” he said. “They missed a year in 2010/11 when they went to Syria, and they missed last year as well.

“If I can just pay the outstanding fee to the last school, they will issue the papers. We have a new school for them but they won’t accept them until the papers are transferred. They can’t afford to lose anymore time.

“My sons especially are at a crucial year in their schooling and I really need help to get them back into education,” Fa’oor added.