Extension of cash grant to private schools lauded

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The Irfaan Ali Administration has come in for high praise over its decision to extend the ‘Because We Care’ cash grant to parents of students attending private schools in Guyana.

Initially, the grant was only applicable to parents of children in the public school system, however, following consultation, President Irfaan Ali on September 16 extended the programme to parents of all school age children in the country.

The extension will see an additional $320 million being distributed to parents of some 17,000 children.

Parents of private school students have applauded the move by the government. Lazana Hollingsworth, a mother of two told the Department of Public Information (DPI): “It is a very good thing because people often think that when your kids are going to private schools, they have it all, but this is very thoughtful of President Ali to consider us parents that sending our kids to private school. Just want to say thank you for that.”

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Devon Hopkinson share similar sentiments.

“This is a good initiative on behalf of the President because people have this notion that once your kids going to private school you have money, which is not so. Just that you are making an extra sacrifice to send them to the private school. So, I think any help right now will go a long way, especially in the time that we’re in.”

Meanwhile, Denita Gomez expressed her appreciation to the government and noted that the money will be put towards her eldest child’s CXC examinations.

“I appreciate it because when they were giving it to the public schools, I was saying why they didn’t give to the private school too because all our kids are kids of the nation. So, I’m happy that they allowed to give to the private school.”

Errol Adams, a father told DPI, “the cash grant is actually a good thing since it was initiated to the public schools as well. The private school will definitely benefit from it because you do have some sort of income come in as well since the COVID-19.”

The reintroduction of the ‘Because We Care’ cash grant to children in public schools is another manifesto promise fulfilled by the PPP/C Government.

The grant was first introduced in 2014 at $10,000. However, it was discontinued under the previous APNU+AFC Administration. Additionally, the PPP/C Government has increased the school uniform and supplies voucher from $2,000 to $4,000, which is being distributed in cash this year. Prior to Dr. Ali’s announcement, only children registered in the public school system benefitted from the $19,000 grant. Some $3.3 billion has already been distributed to parents of more than 175,000 students. (Modified DPI Report)



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