A SCHOOL fee assistance of K5 million has been paid to schools in Southern Highlands Province (SHP) to meet the parental component cost in the province.
Southern Highlands Governor William Powi made this announcement at a press conference in Port Moresby early this week.
He said all elementary, primary, high schools and secondary . schools in the province have been paid in full, into their respective school operating accounts.
Mr Powi said the provincial government’s undertaking and commitment to provide free education in the province this year was being implemented.
He said high and secondary schools in the province received the highest cut of K2,021,200, community and primary schools received K1.8milion, While elementary schools received K594, 813, TVET schools received K205, 040, FODE 17, 316 and inclusive education received K2291.
“We recently got our budget approved by the Department of Treasury and the first cheque of K5million is for Infrastructure Development Grant (IDG). We have used this funding to pay for schools fees in the province to ease .the burden of parents,” Mr Powi said.
He said Southern Highlands Province has 393 elementary schools, 184 primary schools, 15 high schools, seven secondary schools, TVET colleges and other schools that have benefited from the funding.
“In the midst of financial difficulty this country is facing, Southern Highlands provincial government has broken all odds to meet its commitment by paying school fees for students in the province. This undertaking is very important for the future of the province and the country,” he said.
Mr Powi said critics have been commenting on social media that the provincial government would ‘not provide the undertaking but the payment of K5 million directly to respective schools operating account have proved them wrong.
He also mentioned that the provincial government would not cater for students attending higher learning institution or tertiary institutions around the country, adding that this have been meet by the National Government through its HELP scheme.