(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) While the end of the academic year is around the corner, parents are weighing a tough decision - are the summer camps with "exorbitant prices" worth the money and time?
Many parents are frustrated over the "expensive and unreasonable" packages that summer camps in the country are offering, with some charging over Dh1,000 for just for a week. It's an issue they face each year, but no solution has been thrashed out.
Parents are demanding camps that offer an affordable monthly package, which won't dig a hole in their pockets and will allow more kids to attend. One of the expensive packages on offer in Dubai charges up to Dh1,650 per week for a full day course - this includes coding, advanced sciences, happiness and positivity and leadership education. Most other camps are priced from Dh500 to Dh900 per week or for five days.
A parent of two children in Dubai, Iram Rizvi, said: "I saw an advert for a STEM summer camp which is priced at Dh1,400 per week. Another sports camp is priced at Dh750 per week. A camp that promises to give 'financial' training to children is priced at Dh1,100 per week. These prices are illogical, unreasonable and irrationally exorbitant. They are not justified at all.
"I think parents need to understand that the activities which have a price label attached to them are not the only ones which promote mental and physical growth for children. Think of the holidays we had as children. Those are some of the best memories I have from my childhood - not expected to nurture or enhance a skill, rather we were allowed to just be ourselves. And yet, we learned so much."
Rizvi said that she will not be sending her kids to summer camps and will conduct their own activities, such as music lessons, a one-off art class, going for walks, reading, board games, arts and crafts at home, cooking and watching movies.
Another parent, Sara Furqan, said she doesn't feel that the price for the camps matches the quality expected.
"The summer camps have different activities, but no focus on writing and reading. They also go on field trips, which have separate charges. My son enjoyed it because it was only playing, dancing and painting, but he learned nothing. This year I want to enrol both my sons but prices are so high that I cannot afford it. If all summer camps reduce the prices, it'll be easier for parents."