Call to stop per-head allocation for rural schools

Dr Annuar (top right) stressing a point to the other panellists.

KUCHING: The federal Education Ministry has been urged to change the method of granting funds to rural schools – currently, allocation is based on the number of students.

Sarawak Assistant Education, Science and Technological Research Minister Dr Annuar Rapaee said the policies in place did not favour rural students.

He said instead of giving allocations based on student numbers, the allocation must take into account the remoteness of the schools, lack of infrastructure and  examination results.

“In rural areas, we have a lot of schools that are low on students, there are schools that have less than 50 students. If we go by this system, rural schools will continue to get small allocations.

“If the allocations are small, how are they going to get the equipment and facilities needed (for teaching and learning)?” he said in an online dialogue  organised by  Institut Aminuddin Baki (IAB) Sarawak on Friday (July 16).

Dr Annuar said such a system was only applicable if all schools had the same level of access to much-needed facilities and equipment.

“Allocation based on the number of students is unfair. What is important is that the funds are channelled based on remoteness, lack of facilities and results.

“If a school is getting the results, then we have to put all efforts into that particular school. Only then can it be on par with the rest.

“If we continue to use the per head allocation system, our rural students will be left behind.”