The Children Education Allowance (CEA) is paid to the government employees in India for the schooling and hostel facilities offered to their children. The amount provided under CEA for a differently abled child is double that offered to a normal child.
The scheme initially provided the following rates to students:
|Education amount||Rs.1,500 per month||There will be a hike in the CEA as the Dearness Allowance (DA) increases|
|Hostel subsidy||Rs.4,500 per month||There will be a hike in the hostel subsidy as the Dearness Allowance (DA) increases|
Subsequently, there were many demands for increasing the rates, expanding the scope, and simplifying the process of reimbursement of the allowance. Now, it is seen that CEA is in accordance with the cost of education. Taking into account the expenditure for education, the reimbursement provided will be as follows:
|Education amount||Rs.2,250 per month||There will be a hike in the CEA as the Dearness Allowance (DA) increases|
|Hostel subsidy||Rs.6,750 per month||There will be a hike in the hostel subsidy as the Dearness Allowance (DA) increases|
Currently, CEA is paid to students up to class 12. There are strong demands to extend this to Graduate and Post Graduate students. However, this is not likely to be accepted as the nature of studies vary greatly at the graduate level and beyond.
Simplification of the process
The complexity of the reimbursement process has been a major area of concern over the years. There have been instances wherein the reimbursement have been held up for years. Hence, there are multiple suggestions to improve the procedures involved in the reimbursement process. Another issue faced is the confusion around the type of vouchers that will be accepted. It has been suggested that the reimbursements are done at the end of the financial year when the academic year ends as well.
For the reimbursement of the educational expenses, a certificate from the head of the educational institution is required. The certificate should show that the child was enrolled in the school for the previous academic year. For hostel subsidy, a certificate is required from the head of the institution that shows the amount incurred by the parent of the student for lodging and boarding. The lowest amount between that mentioned in the certificate and the allowance as per the table above will be paid to the parent.
The CEA scheme is a big relief to the government employees as it takes care of the educational expenses of their children to a great extent. Currently, the allowance is provided to two children of an employee, provided they study in a recognised school.
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