BY AWORI ESTHER LUCY
KAMPALA, Uganda|SHIFTMEDIANEWS| First Lady and Minister for Education and Sports Hon. Janet Kataha Museveni has indicated that schools will re-open for candidate classes later this month, preferably on September 20, 2020.
In a September 2, 2020 letter to the Minister for Finance, Matia Kasaija, Janet Museveni asked that funds in terms of capitation grants to the government schools for the third term should be released to enable them to prepare for the new term.
“I refer to the meeting held on September 1, 2020, by the President and the national Covid-19 taskforce at State House Entebbe. The meeting resolved that a phased reopening of schools starting with candidate classes be implemented starting with September 20, 2020,” Mrs. Museveni says in the letter.
The Education Minister says because the capital grant for the third term of the year 2020 was not released by government to schools in July because they were closed, the money should be sent now.
“On account of the position taken in the above-stated meeting, this is therefore to request you to cause the release of the funds to the beneficiary schools to prepare for the phased reopening of schools.”
In July, the Ministry of Finance directed all accounting officers and local governments to refund money that was transferred to government-aided schools as capitation grant for the second term.
According to the Permanent Secretary, Keith Muhakanizi, the money had been sent to schools but since they were still closed by government following the outbreak of Covid-19 and students did not study the second term, they ought to refund the money since it was not used.
Capitation grant is the money used on instructional materials, co-curricular activities, school maintenance, and payment for utilities such as electricity and water, among others by government schools.
According to the Ministry of Education, each pupil gets shs17,000 per year in government-aided primary schools, whereas in secondary schools, each A-level student gets shs88000 and shs55000 for O-level per term as capitation grant.
The national Covid-19 taskforce headed by Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda in a meeting with the President early this week proposed the reopening of schools and learning institutions for finalists for medical students.
Schools have been closed since March after the country shut down due to Covid 19 pandemic.
Scores of parents who talked to this website however expressed mixed reactions with man saying most of their children especially in private schools may fail to sit for their final exams due to lack of money caused by the COVID 19 lock down.