Counting the full cost: parental and community financing of by Mark Bray

By Mark Bray

COUNTING the complete rate

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Schools in Indonesia frequently impose BP3 or POMG charges on top of admission and class fees. For example, in one Surakarta primary school documented by Moegiadi and Jiyono (1991,15), in addition to the monthly levy of Rp 1,500 a student, parents were encouraged to contribute Rp 500 a student each quarter to cover general contingencies. 5 shows the distribution of BP3 payments by families in different income groups). Gaps are wide between the top and bottom deciles, but they are fairly narrow between the ninth and the second deciles.

The maxim that the one ''who pays the piper calls the tune" does not seem widely applicable to household financing of education in low-income countries. An alternative interpretation of many government statements about the importance of partnership is simply that the governments want to keep basic control over the schools but want somebody else to help pay for the schools (Tembon 1994; Moorad 1992). Moreover, at the school level parent-teacher associations too easily become the vehicles through which teachers draw up long shopping lists of items that they expect parents and other community members to provide.

This is common in Cambodia, for example, where the midday break between shifts in double-shift schools may be used for this purpose (box 2). Tutoring may also be provided in the evenings and early mornings, on weekends, and during school vacations. In Cambodia, as elsewhere, the scale of charges varies by subject and by grade. In 1995 one mother in Phnom Penh indicated that for her Page 16 Box 2. Private Tutoring in Cambodia The clang of a metal pipe against an old car wheel resounded across the school yard, signaling the end of morning classes, but none of the seventy students in Kung Vichet's fourth-grade class budged from their seats.

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