Free tuition not adhered to

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Free tuition not adhered to
Free tuition not adhered to

Africa-Press – Liberia. The education minister says some school officials were suspended for imposing extra fees without the PTA’s approval.

Education Minister Dr. Jarso Maley Jallah says the free tuition policy in public schools is not adhered to.

She told Senators in chambers Tuesday, July 2, 2024, that there is evidence across the country of additional fees being charged to students over what is stipulated in the calendar year.

During her county tour to assess the education system of the 15 counties, Dr. Jallah said it was reported that extra fees are being paid.

Upon review of the registrar’s records and query made to students and parents, she said it was reported that the Parents and Teachers Association (PTA) had decided to pay the extra fees.

On the other hand, she said it was discovered that there were instances where school officials had extra fees without the PTA’s approval.

But she told the Liberian Senate that school officials who had extra fees without the PTA’s approval were suspended with immediate effect.

According to Minister Jallah, the Ministry of Education conducted a one-week workshop from June 17 to 21 in Buchanan City, Grand Bassa County, to develop a three-year Multi-Sectoral Operational Plan for the Liberia Educational Sector Plan (2022/23- 2026/27).

“The Three-Year (2024/25-2026/27) Operational Plan (OP) is tied around priority program interventions and funding requirement- costed ESP at US $967.5m,” she said.

According to her, implementing the OP will require commitments from the Liberian government through budgetary allotments and funding from development partners.

Dr. Jallah noted that the issue of local scholarship is being considered but with caution.

“As part of the GOL 100-Days Deliverables, US$2m was allocated to ensure the payment of outstanding scholarships for local and international students,” she explained.

“However, of the $2m, $1m was approved in the FY 2023/2024 recast budget and subsequently being processed by the MFDP as follows: US$579,119 for International Scholarship payment, US$420,881 for local scholarship,” she disclosed.

The education minister stated that the Government of Liberia has not been able to fully cover the local scholarship areas, causing a problem for the local scholarship scheme.

In some cases, she said, students are being denied clearances for graduation.

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