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Haiti - Education : Free Education, measures for back to school
01/10/2011 12:20:54

Haiti - Education : Free Education, measures for back to school
Gaston George Mérisier, Education Advisor of the Presidency announced that the National Fund for Education (FNE) had already accumulated nearly $30 million, specifying that this fund will be regulated by a law in the next government, the Bank of the Republic of Haiti will manage the funds and the company Price Waterhouse Cooper, a foreign firm, internationally recognized will conduct audits to ensure the transparency of the management of this fund.

"...we are already talking of nearly 30 million [...] there is a whole team at the level of the Presidency who is in charge of this particular file [...] nd the process of seeking additional funds to finance the education of children [...] there will be a law who will come regulate, it is in preparation, but understand that an outgoing government, that is running the current affairs, is not qualified to bring this legislation to Parliament. So we wait the arrival of the next government for this to be done but it is clear that there will be a text that will come regulate this decision of the State..."

Gaston George Mérisier then give some details of the measures decided by the President Martelly in favor of the free schooling, measures that will take effect from the start of school, Monday, Oct. 3.

"...The first measure announced [...] concerns the national schools. Usually there is a small fee of 100 gourds that parents pay for these [...] this year, the President decided to eliminate these school fees.

The second measure is extremely important for the President of the Republic, it is in favor of children aged 6 to 12, who are outside of the education system [not enrolled] that will be admitted to school next Monday, 142.000 children will benefit from this measure.

Third important measure for families, the support of children admitted in the first fundamental year, in the Department of the West and Artibonite. The President has decided to pay the tuition of all these children, I precise well, that these are the children of the first year of basic education in the departments of West and Artibonite. This measure concerns about 120.000 children.

The fourth measure taken by the State for this school year, is firstly, the continuation of the subsidy by the State of the textbook up to 70%. [...] secondly, for the poorest families who can not pay the remaining 30%, they will benefit from grants. This means that the State will give books for free to these children. Finally we must add, that in some very poor neighborhoods, the President [...] has committed to make schools free [...] from the first year to sixth year. This measure concerns about 200 schools across the country, including Cité Soleil and will benefit about 20,000 children..."

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