Govt fails to pay schools
Johannesburg - Some provincial education departments have failed to compensate schools which offer fee exemptions for poor pupils, the Sunday Times reported.
One Eastern Cape school granted fee exemptions of more than R700 000, but received just R784 from the government.
Provinces are obliged to pay compensation to schools for admitting pupils whose parents cannot afford school fees. This was according to amended regulations which came into effect in April last year. Qualifying schools were supposed to have been paid by November 2011, but the Free State, KwaZulu-Natal and Limpopo had not done so.
Meanwhile, the North West paid out only R148 840 to nine schools, despite budgeting R1 million for 248 schools. It said most schools had missed the application deadline.
Mpumalanga's education department said it had not received any applications. The Eastern Cape paid out R2.7 million to 77 schools, an average of R35 000 per school. It said these were the only schools that had applied for compensation.
According to the Sunday Times several schools had applied, but were not paid out, or paid less than they had applied for. As a result, schools across the country had written off millions in fee exemptions.
The basic education department said compensation for schools depended on the availability of money.