The basic parameters of the state budget are given, so it will be difficult to find a way to adjust it. But the Minister of Education wants to try.
“I’m going to the coalition meeting on Tuesday afternoon with some proposals for partial steps that should lead in this direction and should bring additional funds to the education budget,” he said in a Sunday debate on TV Nova Bek, which lacks at least five billion.
For example, his department still does not receive funds for the salaries of 17,000 non-teaching staff next year – janitors, cleaners, cooks and economists.
Due to the lack of money, the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MŠMT) has also proposed to reduce the number of maximum subsidized hours in schools, which could threaten the individualization of teaching, as Nauzal has already described.
So far, it doesn’t look like any deal is coming. Bek last discussed the education budget last Monday with Prime Minister Petr Fiala (ODS). According to government spokesman Václav Smolka, however, they did not agree on any conclusion. They subsequently had to cancel their program due to illness.
The minister’s meeting with the school unions, which was to discuss the school strike announced for next Monday, also had to be moved.
Finances: Not much room left
The members of the coalition differ on the issue of an additional increase in the budget of the Ministry of Education and Culture. The proposal has the support of Minister Bek’s home party, the Starostů.
The members of the coalition group on education are also against the savings in education, which would have an impact on the quality of education – MPs Pavel Klíma (TOP 09) and David Šimek (KDU-ČSL). On the contrary, the ODS does not support further increases in spending in education.
“Minister Stanjura has not yet spoken to Minister Bek about his demands for the Ministry of Education chapter, because Mr. Bek was ill last week,” explains Ministry of Finance spokeswoman Michaela Lagronova.
Nothing is pre-arranged and it will be very difficult to find an agreement.
“We’ll see what reasoning or plan Minister Bek comes up with tomorrow. I’m just pointing out that after the second reading of the State Budget Act in the Chamber of Deputies and the failure to submit an amendment to this area, there is not much room for maneuver for any transfers between individual budget chapters,” adds the spokesperson of the Ministry of Finance.
Next year, the Ministry of Education is supposed to manage 269 billion crowns, which is 3.9 billion crowns more year-on-year, but in reality there is a lack of funds in the budget. According to the calculations of the school unions, this is less than eight billion crowns.
The legal increase in the amount of money for teachers’ salaries alone will amount to 8.5 billion crowns next year. At the same time, the government committed to the addition, and this year the law also passed the Chamber of Deputies.