What happened to UBEP?

National, Normal

SCHOOL fees have not been reduced by many schools nationwide despite the National Government’s launch of the Universal Basic Education Plan (UBEP) last year.
Concerned parents complained to The National and asked why the fees were still high and what had happened to the UBEP 2010-19 launched by Prime Minister Sir Michael Somare last Oct 25.
“We had expected the fees to come down,” they said.
Under the UBEP, the Government is to spend a total of K16 billion over 10 years or K2 billion a year to ensure disadvantaged children had access to education.
The parents said UBEP was a good concept initiated by National Research Institute director Dr Thomas Wedster, Education Secretary Dr Joseph Pagelio and a team of experts to enable all to have access to education.
They said the UBEP was not working as fees were not reduced and children from poor families were forced to stay at home.
In Western Highlands province, some parents claimed some schools increased the fees while others did not.
Simbu Governor Fr John Garia said school fees for all educational institutions in his province would remain the same as last year.
East New Britain’s provincial education board is also maintaining last year’s fees.