Wed | Aug 15, 2018

Education ministry sets record straight on school funding policy

Published:Wednesday | August 9, 2017 | 10:56 AMLynford Simpson
Senator Ruel Reid, minister of education. - File

Following a series of claims and counter claims, during which the Education Minister Ruel Reid referred to some school administrators as extortionists and corrupt before being forced to withdraw the comments, the Ministry has moved, it says, to set the record straight on its school funding policy.

The Ministry, in a statement last evening said it's not true that it's providing only $17,000 to $19,000 per student to cover operational expenses.

The Ministry says it has increased the areas of support since last year to include PATH students, ICT, TVET, STEM, temporary staffing, part-time teachers, and for maintenance, among others..

It asserts that there was no noticeable increase in the amount of support to schools during the 2012 -2016 period, forcing schools to be creative to survive.

According to the Ministry, it has been providing an over 100 per cent increase in resources to primary and secondary schools from where they were in 2015-2016.

For secondary schools, the support for high schools moved from $2.6 billion to $5.3 billion in 2016-2017. The amount has been increased to $7.2 billion for the 2017-2018 period.

The Ministry says the total request for support from parents averages $12,500 and not $50,000.

The Ministry says over 50 per cent of students in the system are on the PATH programme or are very poor and in need of support.