Child benefit depends on conduct mark
The president of the National Federation of Parents’ Associations, Mihaela Gună, considers that offering social help should not depend on whether or not the children attend school on a regular basis.
Articol de Octavian Coman, 21 Ianuarie 2011, 09:38
According to the government a grade lower than 8 in conduct would lead to the suspension of allocation for family support until the end of the school year.
The president of the National Federation of Parents’ Associations, Mihaela Gună, says that in order to be given this social support adults can be asked to work- for example- in different fields.
However, Mihaela Gună does not believe it is a good idea to tie this support to the school attendance of the children.
‘Some parents may actually wish to send their offspring to school, but do not have the necessary means to do that: they do not have shoes, clothing, money for school supply and if we cut off that support because the child has not been to school then we will really enter a vicious circle and we will not find a solution for this problem.
’I do not believe this is how we should discourage dropping out of school. Maybe if we paid attention to why these kids do not go to school, we would be able to solve the problem.’, said Mihaela Gună.
‘Risk of abuse’
On Wednesday, the Prime Minister explained ‘so that there will be no confusions’, that the new law does not refer to the universal child benefit, it refers to the so-called benefit for family support.
According to this newly approved law concerning the family support benefit the children from these families must attend school on a daily basis.
The document states that the family support benefit is given with the condition that the children do not have unjustified absences from school throughout a semester, which would lead to the grade 8 in conduct.
The Minister of Work explained that if the conduct grade reaches 8 or below, the family support benefit will be stopped until the end of the school year.
The spokesman for the School Inspectorate Ilfov, Rada Dumitru, says that according current regulations, a student who has 10 unjustified absences he will have a 9 in conduct. I asked her if in this mechanism of lowering the grade there is room for abuse from the teachers.
This way, a family could lose the social support because of a possible wrong decision of the teachers. Inspector Rada Dumitru however, leaves out any kind of abuse.
‘The grade in conduct is decided in the Class Council. This mechanism is made up of the form master and the teacher from that class, so that grades ranging from 10 to 7 will be decided upon in this Class Council, and grades lower than 7 are discussed, proposed by this council but it is approved in the School Board’, Rada Dumitru said.
The spokesman for the Parents Associations, Mihaela Gună, has however her doubts about it and says that when deciding a conduct mark there can be room for subjectivism.
Translated by: Iris Butnariu
MA Student, MTTLC, Bucharest University