Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Financial aid for poor students at SM Wong Nai Siong – Temenggong Lau

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Lau (third left on stage) receives the contribution from Chew. At fifth left is Lu. Looking on in the front row are Melilea International staff.

SIBU (Nov 19): Children from poor families who wish to study at SM Wong Nai Siong will be provided with financial assistance, said the school’s Board of Directors chairman Temenggong Datuk Vincent Lau Lee Ming.

He said they did not want to see poor children prevented from studying at Chinese independent schools due to their family’s poor financial background.

“We will assist in reducing or exempting part or all of the tuition fees for these poor children through our school financial assistance programme,” he said during an event to witness the handing over of financial aid for the school’s Youth Hope Project from Melilea International yesterday.

Lau said Chinese independent schools, like the government-aided schools, are part of the national education system and also play an important role in national building.

However, unlike the government-aided schools, he said Chinese independent schools did not receive government funding for administration or purchase of equipment.

As such, he said students studying at Chinese independent schools have to pay a substantial amount of fees which is obviously a burden to many potential students who may wish to study at the schools.

Nationwide, he said there are over 60 Chinese independent secondary schools and 14 of them are in Sarawak.

He said the number of students in Chinese independent schools differ from one location to another.

As an example, he said big schools have more students like Foon Yew High School which has 15,000 students in its two branches in Johor while smaller ones have fewer students like Ming Lik Chinese Independent School in Sarikei, which has less than 100 students.

He said the tuition fees of the Chinese independent schools also differ, with those in Peninsular Malaysia charging higher fees than those in Sarawak.

In recent years, Lau said both the federal and state governments had allocated funds to the Chinese independent schools to alleviate their financial burden.

He was grateful to the government for the funding, saying this will go a long way in helping ensure the sustainability of Chinese independent schools.

On another note, Lau reminded past recipients under the school Youth Hope Project to be to be grateful to their sponsors for making things happen.

“Always try to reciprocate and pay back to the community with good deeds and this will help create a warm, loving and caring society in the long run.”

Meanwhile, Melilea International Crown Star Director (CSD) Jasper Chew handed over a personal contribution of RM10,000 to the project during the ceremony.

Chew pledged to contribute RM10,000 each year from 2022 onwards for six consecutive years as tuition and administrative fees to adopt five Junior Middle Three students until they have completed their studies in Senior Middle Three.

Meanwhile, the school principal Lu Yew Hiing expressed gratitude to Chew for her kind gesture to help the school in the fundraising project.

“Hopefully, entrepreneurs will emulate the shining example of Chew and also help contribute to the school so that we will be able to adopt more students to study at the school.”

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