PNG Compulsory Education To Begin Next Year

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Starts at elementary level, paired with ‘standards-based’ ed

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, August 1, 2014) – Compulsory education will begin next year, says Education Minister Nick Kuman.

The minister told senior education officers attending a meeting in Western Highlands Province that compulsory education would begin in 2015, starting at the elementary level. It would ensure the education of the hundreds of thousands of children who are not in school now.

He said the government is doing its part to help parents, but parents are not doing their part by ensuring that their children are in school and learning.

Mr Kuman said compulsory education would help Papua New Guinea become economically independent, literate and self-reliant.

Mr Kuman also backed the new move from the controversial outcome-based education system to standards-based education.

"Setting national standards allows for equal student opportunity. Standards express what all students should know and be able to do at each grade level of school," he told participants at the meeting.

The conference is expected to discuss the government’s greater emphasis on technical training under the Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET)program in which the government wants a vocational centre or community college built in each district of the country.

The minister highlighted government policies in line with department programs.

These policies are the church-government partnership, new pension for public services which will also involve teachers, K200 million [$US79,758,000] loans for school children and the standard based education curriculum implementation.

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