Government releases capitation grant before school reopens


By Damali Mukhaye

By Shabibah Nakirigya

The Education and Sports Department bowed to pressure and released part of the capitation grant for all government-subsidized schools to prepare them before the reopening in January.

Principals of government-subsidized schools pushed the government to release grants to refurbish schools that fell into disrepair after they closed four months ago.

Secondary education commissioner Sam Kuloba said the funds should be used to purchase teaching materials, cut down overgrown grounds and cover other administrative costs.

“We have asked the Directors General (CAO) to release 50% of the capitation grants to all schools in the country to prepare for reopening next year,” Kuloba said on Friday at the close of the fiscal year. Senior One and Senior Five Selection in Kololo. Ceremonial grounds in Kampala.

“We will follow up with the CAOs to make sure that this money is paid into the school accounts as soon as possible,” he added.
Mr Kuloba said the balance will be sent to school accounts when all educational institutions reopen next year.

The capitation subsidy for universal primary education per student per year is 17,000 Shs. These are supposed to be used to procure educational materials such as chalk and stationery which are not provided by the government.

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In addition, each primary school implementing UPE received a fixed grant of 1.3 million shillings per year to cover fixed costs.
This grant helps schools maintain their facilities and pay utility bills throughout the year. This means that with the 50 percent, each UPE school will receive 650,000 Shs.

Meanwhile, the annual capitation grant for students of the universal secondary education program is 174,000 Shs for O-Level students and 255,000 Shs for A-Level students.

Initially, the government had asked CAOs to release funds only to higher education institutions authorized to reopen next week on Monday and revealed that the capitation grant for primary and secondary schools would be released two weeks before the reopening.

But school leaders and teachers’ associations protested the move, arguing that the government should release funds two months before the reopening to allow schools to prepare.

Ugandan National Union of Teachers General Secretary Mr. Filbert Baguma, at the Kololo Teachers’ Day celebration in Kampala this month, informed the government that most schools have become busy and dirty because there was no money for their upkeep during the lockdown.

The president of the Association of High School Principals, Mr. Martin Okiria Obore, has called on the government to bail out some private schools with capitation grants to prepare for the reopening.
He said the majority of them went without any parents tuition, and therefore have no funds to allow them to reopen safely.

During the screening exercise, the government also revealed that the textbooks for the new junior high school curriculum are ready and will soon be shipped to the country. The government implemented the new lower secondary curriculum last year.

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