The Knesset has enacted a new law to cap the prices of afternoon after-school care. The bill introduced by Kulanu MK Yifat Shasha-Biton, which passed its second and third reading, empowers the Minister of Education to set maximum prices for after-school afternoon care prices for children up to third grade in institutions operated under the auspices of local authorities. Institutions that exceed the stipulated prices can be fined up to NIS 50,000. In each reading 65 MKs voted in favor, none voted against, while one MK abstained.
This legislation is an important component in Minister of Finance Moshe Kahlon's "family net" program to ease expenditures and the cost of living for working families. Maximum prices that can be charged for afternoon after-school care will be NIS 935 per month with families in lower socioeconomic brackets paying no more than NIS 780. There will also be subsidies for outlying and disadvantaged areas.
Many local authorities have been charging far higher monthly fees and have attempted to persuade parents that their educational enrichment programs contained superior content than those being outlined by the government. However, Kahlon was determined that Kulanu's bill should pass before the Knesset broke for the summer recess.
Kahlon said, "This is good news and worth thousands of shekels annually for families in years in which they are hardest hit financially. It is exactly in those years that they need government assistance. It is about time that young families receive things from the state and not only have to give. The Afternoon-Care Law is a major step in completing the 'Family Net' plan. Children will receive good quality afternoon after-school care at reasonable prices."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on July 27, 2017
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