Zinaida Popa: All good ideas in education are supported by Chisinau Council

Raising funds from parents for repairs or other maintenance work in preschool or educational institutions goes to show that the sector is insufficiently funded. But no one wants a leaky ceiling in a classrom, for example, said Zinaida Popa, PAS councilor in the Chisinau City Council, during an IPN debate dedicated to the start of the new school year.

The statement was in support of her fellow panelist, the city’s education deputy head Andrei Pavaloi, who said the municipal budget for education should be at least 600 million lei, instead of the current 169 million.

“We must allocate the money in a very targeted manner, equally and fairly, without creating privileges for some and disadvantages for others. This way, the parents will not be put in a position to raise money themselves. But when there are problems with the ceiling or a wall inside the building, and municipal funding is insufficient, what are the parents to do? What should the teachers do? They don’t want to stay in such conditions either. What should the principals do if they don’t have financial resources? This is the reason that triggers such unauthorized fundraising”, said Zinaida Popa, adding that massive, targeted, fair and equal investments are required. “We don’t want situations where some get energy efficiency, equipment, swimming pools and educational spaces, and others don’t even get the basic minimum”.

Answering a question about the rising costs of school meals amid as the concurrent crises facing Moldova wreak havoc on all budget planning processes, the PAS councilor said:

“It’s important to stress that meals in educational institutions are covered by the state budget, not the municipal one. The decisions at the central level were taken, and the municipal council ensured the correlation of the budget, assuming the respective expenses... The amounts allocated for feeding a child increased by 20 percent per day. We are going to have further communication to balance certain aspects. The councilors are aware of the pressing needs. The correlation of the budget as well as the 30 million lei program for extended classes were also approved. We, as local elected officials, are contacted by parents and we know it’s a problem. All good ideas in education are supported by the City Council”.

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