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Pawnshops crowded as school semester opens on Monday

Parents have been crowding into pawnshops to get money to help pay their children's educational expenses.

In Si Sa Ket's Muang district, where schools reopen tomorrow, the municipal pawnshop said it had Bt127 million to support parents and, if that was not enough, it had another Bt62 million in reserve.

The pawnshop is a source of cash for parents, including the 43,500 Si Sa Ket rice farmers who are still awaiting money from the rice-pledging scheme. They are owed Bt3.84 billion in total.

In Buri Ram's Muang district, the municipal pawnshop reported that it had obtained another Bt100 million after determining the previously set budget of Bt150 million was insufficient and that the number of customers had risen 30 per cent over last year.

In Khon Kaen's Muang district, the municipality's two pawnshops have Bt218 million in total.

They are offering a discounted interest rate until September 15 to celebrate the pawnshop service's 54th anniversary.



Protest 'will not cause delay'

Schools near the main anti-government rally site in Bangkok are now getting ready to open for a new semester. Rajavinit Mathayom School director Boontham Pimpaporn said yesterday that despite the protest site's close proximity to the school, the launch of the new semester would not be delayed - it would open on Friday.

The protest site is located in front of the United Nations' regional headquarters on Rajdamnoen Avenue.

In the meantime, Boontham said the school would follow the political situation closely and the new term would be delayed if the school was faced with severe traffic congestion or an eruption of violence.

He said the school may also discuss the situation with other schools in the vicinity, such as Satriwithaya, Mathayom Wat Makutkasat and Mathayom Wat Benchamabophit.

Mathayom Wat Makutkasat School director Charasrit Klinsuwan said the school did not think there would be a problem starting the new semester on Monday, as scheduled, because the traffic on Ratchasima Road has been normal.




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