Gov’t tightens control of needy students’ programme

Peter St. Jean

A government programme assisting needy students will continue but will now be subjected to more stringent regulations.

Education Minister Peter St Jean has been emphasizing that efforts will be made to ensure that the support being given goes to deserving cases only.

“This year our support for students will continue – we will continue the transfer grant for students who have difficulties.  We will continue the provision of textbooks for disadvantaged families, and we will continue the support for provision of uniforms for the students who are faced with those challenges,” Minister St Jean confirmed at a news conference called to announce the results of this year’s Grade 6 National Assessment exams, the gateway to secondary education under the Universal Secondary Education initiative being employed by the government.

St Jean warned however, that the facility would be properly managed to avoid assistance being obtained by families able to provide adequately for their children.

“There will be much more control this year in determining the individuals who benefit from these safety nets, to ensure that the assistance reaches those people who are really deserving of it,” the minister said.

He explained further that it was “not a free for all, but that this support will be geared, directed at the group of individuals who really experience difficulties, cannot provide and thus the government of Dominica will step in and provide for them”.

While he didn’t say so categorically, the gist of his presentation suggests that the programme has been abused in the past by those who can afford.

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  1. G
    June 27, 2012

    All u got all the votes all you wanted so no need to support those who could always provide for themselves.but better late than never it was time all you started helping the needy ones and not the ones who because they supported your political party cause i know ofmany of them whose parents could afford and were receiving and blinging with black berry and expensive shoes and eveywhere it have a action they always present

  2. Gwo Pwell
    June 26, 2012


  3. Mr Gouty
    June 26, 2012

    A person with a tv or other thing at home does not say government should nothelp his child at schoole . what mr st jean is not saying alba has a money problem now and chavez has his people to look after and they are in thee millions if it was like before he would lend money from alba and not france for the air port road

  4. poe-ki-toe
    June 26, 2012

    pure koshonie from St. Jean as usual….the $8million dollars all you invest in LIAT could have been better spent on education…..especially at our primary schools and our better equipping teachers top deal with the various learning levels of today’s children! We cannot have a solid tourism industry if our future tiurguides/operators and policy makers cant read, write and share ideas.

  5. LIAT Quik Pack
    June 26, 2012

    First of all this program is saturated with Political Hypocrisy and Begging Conditioning.

    It was never intended to help the poor but supporters of the DLP. People who could afford benefited from this politically infested program because they are LABOURITES. It is a national program and the elected members of Salisbury, Marigot and Roseau Central have never been approached to help identify needed children?

    There are children who need the assistance but the POLITICIANS should allow the civil servants to do a proper job towards assisting those in genuine need…

  6. Morihei Ueshiba
    June 26, 2012

    Good move s.jean squeezeeeeee dem hard!

  7. me
    June 26, 2012

    to everyone i will be heading this programme, and if i know u can afford you wont be getting the assistance ok. kool

  8. shame, Shame,SHAME!!
    June 26, 2012

    but is the DLP that brought in this begging culture to Dca now when ppl that have come beg them don’t wanna give …. garcon everyone must get once they line up in the ministry building….

  9. advocator
    June 26, 2012

    I tend to agree with one of you contributors. I live in a particular community and the benefactor of this programme are supporter of the labour party. i have seen it with my eyes . the appointed individual goes around collect names of children ,who parents or family that are labourites. I know of need person who did support the labour party begging for assistant and it never came forth.

    Mr. Minister, the names of the children should comes from the school and village Council .Especially the school , where the teachers and principal know the children who are in need.

  10. June 26, 2012

    its not election time now so he comes out and says that when election coming he will say something else allllllllll shall eat that was labour slogan so tell pepper donot take it out :lol: :cry:

  11. i'mWondering
    June 26, 2012

    Glad to see that the government is being responsilbe by trying to provide for he have nots of the Dominican society.

    However, it mustbe noted, that like every other system – fraudsters will do what they do best. We have the terminology here regardign the deserving and undeserving poor. The undeserving poor refers to those who exploit the system and are not really qualified to get the assistance but due to whatever means, they take advantage and get that assistance which would be better dished out to the deserving poor.

    I’m of the opinion that every child is entitled to an educatio, whetehr you rich or poor, white or black. Any government who shares that opinion, i’ll agree with. However…liek all else, there must be constant checks and balances……

  12. hmmm
    June 26, 2012

    i dont think soo nah my nephew was in need both parents turn there back on him i was unemployed and both u all and welfare turned me down when i applied for assistance and ppl that can afford are always the ones getting and dis is unfair we need to stop playing politics and really supprt the children who are in need

  13. La Pwet
    June 26, 2012

    “There will be much more control this year in determining the individuals who benefit from these safety nets, to ensure that the assistance reaches those people who are really deserving of it,” the minister said” I do hope so MR MINISTER because in the past the person in Pointe Michel you all have as the contact link gives the names of only her kids, families and close close Labour friends only and they not needy. I find the names should come from the schools or this should be done via the village council not via labour reps in the villages like how it is done in Pointe Michel. For a few years now is her family and close labour friends that getting and their are people who really really need and then no nothing about that.

    • 1979
      June 26, 2012

      i quite agree, just being smart by playing stupid.

  14. Malgraysa
    June 26, 2012

    Only those wearing red underpants need apply!

  15. stoic
    June 26, 2012

    unbelievable…….Dominica have too many dirt poor families……blame management ….don’t blame the recipients.. …people will always try to take advantage of an opportunity

  16. Trueman
    June 26, 2012

    **Everyone needs help**

    Now everyone is going to say they can’t afford and thay need help!! That’s what such programmes can do. It can sometimes take away our ability to be self reliant!!

    I really wish the needy students get the help. But for those who can afford for it yourselves!

  17. Anonymous
    June 26, 2012

    so because im not walking bear feet, doesn’t mean im not needy? i think the assistance should be given to those who need and are trying at the sametime to help themselves. Not those who can work but sit on the backside all day doing NOTHING, then call themself needy>

    • Anonymous
      June 26, 2012

      Really true. Some of us who work are in need of the assistance more. Imagine my child should not benefit from my tax money but an able bodied lazy human being who don’t want to work can. I believe each child is entitled to the grant the country should do something for its children.

  18. Watching
    June 26, 2012

    its about time…and we go see…

  19. See It
    June 26, 2012

    It was time that it was being controlled because people who could afford was getting. I think Social Workers should be assigned to check on families request. I know some people do not play school fees and get averything free but they have flat screens T,big freeze, washer and dyer in the those wooden house and saying they cannot afford. We really need to check them out before giving. Thank you for this new way of really giving to the needy.

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