Using BOS Fund Effectively

The Jakarta Globe daily newspaper on August 10th 2010 concerned about one main problem in education sphere in Indonesia, namely the unaware parents phenomena about allocation of school operational aid (BOS)

This phenomena based on the data that were collected from a survey of 3600 parents from 720 elementary and junior high school that were held on 2009. This survey then showed that about 55 percent of parents are unaware what the fund is for, 97 percent do not know how much money that their child receive under this program and about 74 percent do not know about how it is spent.

This phenomenon about how parents who were involved in that survey are ‘blind’ and unaware about the existence of BOS actually stands as the root of the BOS problem.

Furthermore, those condition and attitude –‘blindness’ and unawareness- takes up to surface a foul potency that can be done by school, namely debauchery of BOS. This debauchery can have many forms such as neither for recreation for teachers in the name of comparative study program, using that fund to pay bonus, remuneration, and transportation cost for teachers or school official, nor for attempting for a school to be an international standard school, like an incident which is now being investigated by Indonesia Corruption Watch (ICW). And if the debauchery of BOS fund actually happens continuously, the parents then who will finally suffer many disadvantages because there will be such illegal collection neither for test paper, uniform, nor text books that actually can be freely got because all the cost for them should have be the main concern of BOS program.

Those kind of acts surely contradict with the main purpose of BOS, namely to help student who are 7-15 years old to get education as has been mandated by Article no 20 year 2003. From this article, it can be seen that the main objective of this BOS program is the student themselves. This BOS fund then ought to be used as an expense that should be allocated for helping student who have improper economy condition for getting education program; so, in the future, this program is expected can successfully make a free education program for elementary student.

Hence, the two main things that should be done in order to realizing the BOS program are transparency and accountability from the school which act as side that has that grant. Those two main points are imperative to be implemented so the parents can know exactly and clearly how and for what that fund is spent. If there are no any longer transparency and accountability, the case above about the “blindness” of parents about BOS program can be explained easily.

Hence, parents participation in the allocation of BOS fund is also imperative. It is by all means in order to keep the BOS fund is spent in the right purpose and also to support the transparency and accountability.

Parents should become more active and do not become apathies.  Moreover, parents also should be involved by school officials in discussion talking about the allocation of BOS program, neither in planning, implementing, watching, nor evaluating. This action can be done through the making of school committee as has been mandated by decision of Ministry of Education of Republik Indonesia number 044/U/2002 about Education council and school committee

Furthermore, the relation that is happened between parents and school should be equal, not as a top-down relation as had been said by Ade Irawan from Education Coalition on kompas.com site on August 11th 2010. If the relation that is happened just a top-down relation, parents are just people who always say “yes” to anything school policy, despite their ignorance of how useful it would be.

The next problem from this BOS program is that it has not yet enough capacity nowadays to fulfill all the cost for education process in schools in Indonesia; so realizing a free education program in Indonesia still seems will be taking a long time.

Answering this problem, at least there are two solutions that can be done. First by distributing the BOS fund especially in schools which are located in remote and isolated regions which the society inside have not yet enough money to pay the education cost. By concerning to distribute the BOS fund in such regions, it will guarantee the existence of schools there to always educate the children.

Second by doing a cross subsidy at schools in metropolitan country especially which are have enough capacity in financial matter. This cross subsidy is by all means to guarantee them who have not enough money to pay education cost to continue their study in those schools. The others who have better condition economically have to pay more in order to cover up all education cost in those schools. Hopefully, with this cross subsidy, the studying process can run perfectly even though the BOS fund that are allocated to those schools do not as much as allocated in isolated and remote regions.

Mass Organizations: Not to Fragmenting Indonesia

After the new order regime was collapsed by Indonesians scholar in 1998, the amount of mass organizations in Indonesia then profoundly increase. Not less than 9000 organizations are recognized until now and it can be easily foreseen that there are so many such organizations which are not recognized yet but have already been performing their activities.

Indonesia nowadays is standing as a democratic country where its population can raise up their arguments, opinion, and also critics. They are also can form an organization that is established by the same purpose among its member and also in order to act as a channel that can involve in developing Indonesia. This act is legal; based on Article number 8 year 1985 about mass organization.

Unfortunately, there are some mass organizations that only have a huddle mentality and become unaware with Indonesia’s main goal which actually ought to be their goal that have to be achieved in a row with their efforts to accomplish their subjective purpose. Furthermore, they only exploit the democracy momentum in order to achieve only their own goal, not Indonesia’s.

There are many incidents that clearly show this problem. One of them is can be traced if its issue is about religion. Violence upon Ahmadiyah followers in Kuningan and also prohibiting upon HKBP followers in Bekasi that is done by FPI members can show that mass organizations can act as if they are higher than constitution and Indonesia;s framework, namely Pancasila.

Furthermore, the incident of ordering to catch Playboy Magazine editor by FPI members clearly shows that they can easily step over Indonesia’s constitution and law as if they are police who can catch a person who is suspected as fugitive.

Aside from those incidents, the incident from Bendera organizations who threw feces unto Malaysia embassy shows that this mass organization can only defame Indonesia in international constellation. They do not think how if our embassy in Malaysia is also thrown by feces. Their act just makes deterioration upon Indonesia-Malaysia relationship

One thing that easily can be forgotten is about implementing Pancasila that actually have to be their framework as it is said upon regulation number 8 article number 2.  

First when the issue is about religion. It is true that upon the regulation there is no forbidden to form a mass organization based on the same religions among its members.

But there is one thing that has to be noted: that using religion principle as a base of mass organization also has to accord to Indonesia’s main aim, namely to raise up Indonesians prosperity and making Indonesians society that have to respect each other as a part of implementing religion principle in society.

This means that when mass organizations are built by religion principle as their foundation, they have to tolerate each other in their social life, not to oppress the other by their religion principle.

Second, when the issue is about civility and the unity of Indonesia. Realities show that it is often happened frictions and clashes between mass organizations. Each of them cannot restrain themselves to not insist their own truth to be implemented unto others. Communication has lost and clashes are the only way that has been considered as the good one.

Is it true that mass organizations are formed in order to separate Indonesians? These uncivilized acts threat the unity in Indonesia and it is not impossible that Indonesia in the future will be fragmented unto many kinds of mass organizations which always put their subjective aim without have to look at Indonesia’s main problem and giving solution to them.

Furthermore, all of these acts cannot bring mass organizations to participate in building Indonesians prosperity, protecting Indonesia nation wholly, increasing the intellectual life of Indonesia nation and also guarding the world peace as has been said upon Indonesia’s constitution preamble.

Hence, what is actually needed nowadays just making the process to form mass organizations more strict. This thing is done solely not to repress society aspiration in democracy process that has been developing in Indonesia. It is imperative in order to guard Indonesia’s ideology and constitution so they cannot be easily stepped over by mass organizations which only have huge masses.

Aside that, implementing and revising the regulation more strictly thing that can be done as the second alternative.

It is true that freezing and dismissing a mass organization have been regulated in the regulation article number 13, 14, and 15. But, the implementation especially for those who do activities which disturb society neatness and security is very minim.

Hence, the law officer should be stricter in law enforcement and also the process of justifying the actor of problematic mass organizations have to be more transparent, so Indonesians can clearly shows and know the ending of that case and do not be leaved in blindness about whether that mass organizations is still exist or not.

Furthermore, if a mass organization is already dismissed, it is imperative to avoid them raise up again with using another name but same ideology. It can be done by the first step above, namely making stricter the process to form mass organizations.

Mass organizations are indeed very useful and this statement cannot be denied. They can be as a channel to society to sound their aspiration to government. They also can help government to raise the prosperity of Indonesians. However, when mass organizations are no longer work in the regulation that has been determined and just can force their own subjective aim and step over the law, it is important to immediately freeze and dismiss them. Mass organizations cannot act as “street justice” who always feel as if they are the strongest just because their huge masses.