Universities do not get money for compensation to students
The Ministry of Finance is still thinking of whether it should allocate additional money for it. However, higher educational institutions have already decided that they will use the money that students pay for their education to give them a compensation. Students studying for free will be getting assistance from the scholarship fund.
The project of the Council of Ministers concerning compensation for the loss of the fare discount in the form of moneyed assistance was sent to universities two weeks ago. But the project says nothing about the source the money should come from. Thus, universities decided to use off-budget sources (the money paid by students paying for their education) and from the scholarship fund. Every university decides who deserves the assistance and how many times students can get it. The head of the students’ trade union of Belarusian State University Mihail Bareisha told ERB that the money that students pay for their education will be used to render assistance to them while students studying for free will get assistance from the scholarship fund.
Mіhaіl Bareisha: Students should send appeals to the dean of their faculty attaching all the necessary documents and travel documents. There will be a commission considering the appeals. The commission takes a decision, the funds are used to render assistance and that’s it. Nothing else. The assistance ends there. Only students who really need it will be able to get the compensation.
Students the income of whose families does not exceed the living wage (200 thousand 80 roubles) can hope to get a compensation. ERB has found out that the Council of Ministers mentioned 200% of the living wage but universities doubt they can afford it. Everyone is waiting for the final decision of the Council of Ministers and the consent of the Ministry of Finance to additional moneys assistance.
Mіhaіl Bareisha: A document dealing with all these issues is being worked out by the Council of Ministers. Maybe this document will indicate a special institution that will be allocating additional money for this moneyed assistance. We are hoping for it. There is a project and this project has been approved by all ministries but for the Ministry of Finance.
While the administration of the economic university doubts that students will agree to go through the red tape to get the compensation, the head of the trade union of students of Belarusian State Pedagogic (Maxim Tank) University Vadzim Hrachou assured ERB that they had a lot of interested people.
Vadzіm Hrachou: There are many of them. They come from villages. What wages do you think they get in villages? Some work as cleaners, others – as nurses in kindergartens, the wages are low there. It will be very easy to find families earning less than 200 thousands per person.
The interested will have to present documents indicating the wages of their family members and originals of travel documents. Students of the pedagogical university are collecting documents needed to get the compensation and the first meeting of the commission that will decide who will be able to get the assistance is planned for March. ERB has found out what students of this higher educational institution could figure on.
Vadzіm Hrachou: Money spent on tickets needed to get back to their family place of residence twice a month if it is in another town and then the price of tickets for travelling in local trains can be compensated. I do not remember how many times but it is definitely more than two. And the cost of a travel document for one type of transport in Minsk.
The poorest students will be able to get both the compensation for travelling home and categorical assistance if their family earns less 100% of the minimal living wage. As far as we found out, no additional money will be allocated for categorical assistance because it had always existed in universities but it used to be called moneyed assistance.
Belarusian National Technical University has not taken a decision about compensating the cost of traveling home, but it has already bought students seasonal tickets for Minsk public transport. The dean of the instrument-making faculty Aleh Huseu says that BNTU students will be able to get the compensation once or twice during a term.
Aleg Huseu: I think we will do it once or twice during a term for those who need it. We have already solved the problem with the city transport: we give out season tickets.
Only 30 or 40 out of 1500 students of the instrument-making faculty received season tickets.