Retro-scholarships are a tool intended to prevent premature departure from education by socially disadvantaged children. The aim of this project is to help children to complete secondary school, which without support they would either find impossible or else their results would be poor. This programme increases the children’s options for success in the labour market and in life in general.
The basic idea of the project is to pay out a retrospective incentive scholarship. The beneficiary is not the school, but the pupil. This means that the system can motivate families to ensure that their children attend school regularly, because thanks to the scholarship, going to school will not burden the family budget so much. However, payment of the scholarship is dependent on satisfaction of the conditions that apply.
People in Need, subsidised by the Albatros Foundation, offers a scholarship of up to 12,000 to children whose family’s potential for giving them sufficient support and motivation to continue in their studies is objectively low. Children attending the 1st year of secondary school or vocational school and also pupils in their last year of primary school may apply for a scholarship.
The conditions for inclusion in the scholarship programme are primarily good school attendance, reasonable results and problem-free behaviour. Another fundamental condition is that at least one of the parents must have been educated no higher than to primary school level. These conditions ensure that the scholarship is aimed at the chosen target group – to children about whom it can be assumed that they might not receive sufficient support in their studies. Intentionally, receipt of assistance for material needs or unemployment benefit is not a basic selection criterion, but rather parent competence.
The scholarship is purpose-bound financial aid that the family must use solely for costs connected with the child’s attendance, or for due payment of costs connected with housing (apart from housing loan instalments). The family must then support these costs with proofs of payment. Typical costs include fares to and from school, school supplies, meals etc.