The provincial government of Bali allocates Rp. 20 billion (US$1.74 million) each year to build Bali Mandara Trade Schools (SMKN) to provide a free education for gifted economically disadvantaged students.
Quoted by the State News Agency Antara, Bali governor Made Mangku Pastika told a group of school building planners: “We do not need to make luxurious schools using public funds. The essence of the Bali Mandara Trade School (SMK) concept is to provide an opportunity for disadvantaged children who have demonstrated academic excellence to continue their education. In this way we can support their aptitudes, preparing them for employment upon graduation.”
The Governor said the allocation of Rp. 20 billion each year for four years is for the construction of a SMKN located next to the Bali Mandara High School in Kubutambahan, Buleleng, North Bali.
Pastika said the construction of the school, to be commenced this year, must match the original idea of the project to provide gifted students of limited means with an education.
“The concept of simple construction supporting complete educational facilities will strengthen the students and prepare them for competition; not spoiling them and leaving them in a weakened state when they leave SMK Bali Mandara,” said Pastika.
Pastika said the proposed trade school would uncover skills and potentials for students studying technical skills and workshop experience.
“The goals is that once they complete school they will immediately gain employment and provide incomes for their families,” said Pastika.
Meanwhile. I Ketut Budiarsa, a representative of the planning consultant PT Dana Sularsa Cipta confirmed the school would be built using local materials at a cost of more than Rp. 80 billion and include classrooms, a dormitory, toilets and an office.
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