School vouchers now doubled, 160,000 children to benefit
As promised by the Irfaan Ali-led People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) Administration, the allowance for school uniform vouchers from January 2021 has been doubled.
In September, President Ali had promised that a slew of measures would be implemented following the presentation and passage of the emergency budget for the remainder of the 2020 fiscal year.
On Friday, however, the Government launched its national uniform/school supply programme in several regions across Guyana. Some of these include Regions One, Five, Eight, and 10.
At the launch, it was noted that more than 160,000 school children across the country will receive a $4000 uniform and school supplies voucher to assist with the purchasing of school supplies and uniform.
The PPP/C Government increased the voucher from $2000 to $4000, representing a 100 per cent increase.
Minister of Education Priya Manickchand at the launch told parents that she is pleased that they can get some financial assistance. She said at a time when the world and the country are confronting a pandemic, the vouchers are going to be extremely helpful.
The vouchers can be redeemed at stores across the country. They cannot be redeemed for cash but must purchase what they are intended for. Vouchers can be uplifted at schools on dates and times provided by individual schools.
During Minister Manickchand’s visit to Region Five on Friday, vouchers were distributed at the No 8 Primary, Abary Primary, Mahaicony Primary and Nursery, Dora Point Nursery, Gordon Table Primary, Mora Point Primary, Karamat Primary, Mortice Primary and Nursery, Strathcapmbell Primary and Nursery, Perth Nursery, West End Nursery, Biaboo Primary and District No 10 Nursery and Primary Schools. At these locations, 573 vouchers were distributed to primary school students while 160 pupils at the nursery level received vouchers.
In 2014, Minister Manickchand launched the “Because We Care” project which issued vouchers to parents for each child in the public school system.
It was implemented with the aim of providing support to parents with school-age children and increasing their disposable income, with a view to raising enrolment and attendance rates.
However, in 2015 when the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) Government took office, they scrapped the project and displaced thousands of students and parents.