Chinese schools yet to receive funds from Budget 2015

KUALA LUMPUR: Budget 2016 was unveiled last Friday but the majority of Chinese primary schools and conforming secondary schools, known as SMJK, have yet to receive funds allocated under Budget 2015.

Two Chinese education movements, United Chinese School Committees Association (Dong Zong) and United Chinese School Teachers’ Associations of Malaysia (Jiao Zong) have been urging the government to release the funds.

Under Budget 2015, of the RM800 million slated for the Education Ministry, a total of RM50 million has been allocated for Chinese primary schools.

Chinese media reported that less than 10% of Chinese primary schools have received the allocation from Budget 2015 and November is just around the corner.

Education Minister Mahadzir Khalid told Sin Chew Daily that he would have to find out about this by checking records before replying while Deputy Education Minister Chong Sin Woon said the Education Ministry has received RM20 million from the Finance Ministry but the Education Ministry plans to release all the money at one go when it receives the entire sum of RM50 million.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Wee Ka Siong, pointed out that there is a communication breakdown between the Finance Ministry and Education Ministry where one claims to have distributed the funds while the other claims it has not received it.

While waiting for the two ministries to sort out the allocations, the worry that Dong Zong and Jiao Zong have, are not without basis.

Jiao Zong, in a statement, also said that while the government has announced that government aided schools (such as Chinese primary schools) are entitled to a maximum of RM5,000 a month from the government for utility expenses in Budget 2015, the funding is always delayed and some schools have received warning letters of electricity termination from Tenaga Nasional.

Unlike national schools, (SK schools), payment of electricity and water bills of Chinese primary schools are not under a centralised system in the Education Ministry.

Often, Chinese primary schools pay the bills first then claim later.

As the allocation for Budget 2016 for the Education Ministry had been slashed from RM800 million last year to RM500 million, both Dong Zong and Jiao Zong foresee that allocations would be even more difficult to source.

Chinese schools yet to receive funds from Budget 2015
Ant Daily


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