Education is a basic right that every child must receive regardless of their financial and ethnic background. However, not every family can send their children to school because of their financial stability. Education is not cheap and tuition fees continue to increase every year, even in the primary levels.
Fortunately, the Singaporean government recognises this problem and offers several financial assistance programs for families who can’t send their children to school. One of the most popular ones is the MOE Financial Assistance Scheme. You can also check out other scholarship programs here.
Here are the major and most commonly asked questions about the program and the answers that will guide you through the program.
How do I apply for the MOE Financial Assistance Scheme (FAS) for my child?
If you wish to sign up for the FAS program, you need to get the application form from the school or from the official website of the MOE.
Once you finish the form, you can submit it with your child’s documents and other important documents to support your application.
These documents include your payslip or employment letter to prove your income, your latest Income Tax Notice of Assessment if self-employed and a declaration for all unemployed house members under 62 that they are not doing full-time studies or under the National Service.
If your GHI exceeds $2,500 but you have more than 5 members in your household, you need to include the NRIC of all the household members. If you have other dependent children in the household that don’t have NRIC, you need to provide the appropriate legal documents to show they are living with you.
The school will then contact you if your child’s application is accepted to the program.
You don’t have to worry when it comes to the deadline for the FAS. Parents can apply for the program at any time. However, Primary 6 students must apply for the FAS for their Secondary 1 after they take their PSLE. They can submit the application with their primary school, who will then process their papers and let them know if they were accepted in the program.
Do note that you can also use CPF to pay for your child’s education if he or she is enrol in Polytechnic or University.
I have 2 children studying in different Government schools. Do I need to submit 2 separate application forms for MOE Financial Assistance Scheme (FAS)?
You do not need to submit 2 separate application forms for your children studying in two different government schools. You will only be asked to fill up one form for all their children studying in either government or government-aided school.
If I submit the application form to the school now, when will the financial assistance take effect?
If you submitted all the necessary documents, the school will be able to review the application immediately. If the application is accepted by the end of the month, the FAS will immediately become active in the coming month.
If you have outstanding education loan, you can also opt to defer them as suggested in this article.
My child is a MOE Financial Assistance Scheme (FAS) recipient. Do I still have to pay any fees in cash?
Although the FAS will provide your child with financial assistance for their studies, it will not cover 2nd-tier miscellaneous fees. It will also not reimburse you if you purchased school books and other eligible items before your child got accepted to the program.
If you wish to pay for these fees so you won’t have to pay anything in cash, you can use your child’s Edusave account.
My child is currently under the FAS but will be moving to another school. Do I have to submit a new application to the school so he can continue being an FAS recipient?
If you will be moving your child to a new government or government-aided school throughout the year, you don’t have to worry about reapplying for the program. Your child will still be a FAS recipient until the end of the year.
They will only need to reapply for the program if they wish to continue being under it for the next year. They can submit their applications in their current school, who can then process their new application.
If your child is transiting from primary to secondary school, here is a guide for you.
What are the eligibility criteria for MOE Financial Assistance Scheme (FAS)?
From April 1, 2018, the MOE accepts students who will meet either one of two criteria listed by the ministry.
The first criteria is if the student’s household has a gross domestic income (GHI) that does not exceed $2,750 per month. The GHI can be computed by combining all the household member’s income from various sources. However, if the family receives a full-time National Service (NSF) allowance, it must not be included in the computation of the GHI.
The second criteria is if their family’s Per Capita Income (PCI) does not go over $690 per month. This can be computed by dividing the GHI by the number of members in the household.
For additional information, students and parents can speak to the school regarding the FAS or reach out to the MOE.
What are the types of benefits provided under MOE Financial Assistance Scheme (FAS)?
Some of the benefits students can get from the MOE FAS include public transport subsidies, school bus subsidies and meal subsidies. The subsidy amount increases depending on the child’s current year level. However, if you need laptops to do your home-based learning, here are the ways you can get assistance.
What is the tenure of MOE Financial Assistance Scheme (FAS)?
Every student who gets approved for the FAS can enjoy its benefits until December of that same year. If they wish to continue with the program, they will need to reapply for the program again for the next school year because they may have a different household income profile for the upcoming year.
If you are having trouble with your child’s education due to your finances, don’t be afraid to seek out government support. The government is ready to help out and the FAS is a great program to help your child go to the school they want. Make sure to have the form and documents ready so that your child’s FAS application goes smoothly. If you are having problems filling up the application, reach out to your child’s school so they can help you out.
For more resources on financial aid, here are some articles:
Scholarships in Singapore: A Step-by-Step Guide (Survey Results Inside)
Top 10 Things You Must Ask Yourself Before Applying For Scholarships