FIJI NEWS

Changes to free school bus-fare policy

Written By : LOSALINI RASOQOSOQO. Changes have been made to the free bus fare scheme implemented by Government for all primary and secondary schools last year. Minister for Education, Filipe
05 Jan 2010 12:00

Written By : LOSALINI RASOQOSOQO. Changes have been made to the free bus fare scheme implemented by Government for all primary and secondary schools last year.
Minister for Education, Filipe Bole yesterday said only students from families whose total household income was $15,000 or less, were now eligible for the transport assistance.
He said the assistance would not be restricted to students travelling by bus, but would include those using other modes of transportation like carriers, boats and minibuses.
“In 2010, an eligibility criterion has been approved by Cabinet that will be applied to assess students receiving transport assistance.
“The eligibility criterion is that of the total combined income of families,” Mr Bole said.
However, he said, special consideration would be given to those families above the $15,000 threshold provided good reasons were given for the hardship they face.
“Their applications will have to be assessed by the Department of Social Welfare for the consideration of the Permanent Secretary for Education,” Mr Bole said.
The ministry said that application forms for transport assistance would be available from schools from the second week of January 2010, or from Post Offices for those nearest to a post office.
“Parents and students are urged to collect the application forms and complete and return to their school on enrolment day for endorsement by the head teacher or principal.
“Forms that are not endorsed by the head teacher or principal will not be considered,” Mr Bole said.
“Details of how the assistance will be implemented will be provided in due course through the media and schools.
“The LTA is working on details of ensuring that transport providers comply with safety regulations and on routes to be covered particularly to rural areas that do not have access to bus routes,” he said.




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