VP to Lead Monitoring Of Funds For Schools
A committee will be set up to supervise the use and much-delayed distribution of school operational funds, the government said on Tuesday.
Agung Laksono, the coordinating minister for people’s welfare, said there was a need to ensure that the School Operational Aid (BOS) was being effectively spent by district and municipal administrations nationwide.
“Every year the BOS funding increases, therefore there’s a need to form an education committee, led by the vice president, to monitor the BOS distribution so that it can be used effectively,” he said.
The government has allocated Rp 248.9 trillion ($28.6 billion) for the BOS this year, which will be paid out in four quarterly installments to 497 districts and cities by the central government. The regional administrations are then responsible for distributing the money to schools in their areas.
However, National Education Minister Muhammad Nuh said 78 district and municipal administrations had to date still not released the first batch of funding, distributed at the start of the year, to schools.
“Although the process to distribute the school funding has been slow, the government will still distribute the second batch of the BOS to the regional administrations as scheduled, including to the 78 districts and cities that have not distributed the funding to schools,” he said.
“We have also warned the regional administrations not to be late in distributing this second batch. Hopefully the distribution [from the central government to the regions] will be finished by mid-April.”
Nuh said the delinquent regional administrations would face sanctions for their failure to distribute the first batch of funding.
“My ministry, the Home Affairs Ministry and the Finance Ministry are currently discussing the financial sanctions that will be imposed on the offending administrations,” he said.
“The size of the sanctions will depend on how long they withheld the funding after the March 15 deadline.”
Nuh said geographic obstacles were not appropriate excuses for the tardiness.
“In terms of geography, the schools and the administration offices are usually not located too far apart,” he said.