5 Educational Strategies Needed Urgent Attention In Papua New Guinea - Where Are The Details?

The academic year 2015 started. Talks about change in Education structure and curriculum have taken a back seat. So, what is the latest development? Well nothing much is happening: there is no news on National Education Plan 2015 – 2024 yet; not much has been said about 2-6-6 structural change; Education Department has not released weekly update on Standard Based Curriculum it promised. Everything seemed to have come to a standstill.

Ideally, NEP 2015 – 2024 would have come out by now. But this plan remains to be seen. Is there anything done about it? No one knows yet.

Education Minister responded to questions in the first parliament sitting 2015 that structural change (2-6-6) will take effect next year. There is very little information about how the change will take place. No doubt this change will require adjustment to ‘transitional stages’. By this I mean, transition from 2 to 6 (Grade 2 – 3) and 6 to 6 (Grade 8 – 9).

Adjustment to the current structure must take place for 2-6-6 structural change to work. It sounds too good: 2 years of elementary, 6 years of primary and 6 years of secondary. But, wait a minute?

What would become of the current elementary schools? What would happen to primary schools with their Grades 7 and 8? How would secondary schools cope with Grades 7,8,9,10,11 and 12?

Where does Standard Based Education factor in all these changes? At what stage do students sit examinations? What are the examination subjects? What key learning objectives are tested? What is needed now is DETAIL. Where is the detail?

There are more questions to ask then answers. Papua New Guinean schools are halfway into term 1 and yet rest of the year is shrouded in anticipation – anticipation for a clear plan for a better education system.

Someone, somewhere has to take the lead. Unfortunately, the onus is on leaders in Education Department. They should try harder to get the changes right the first time. NDoE secretary and Education Minister have to take a proactive role. They must address these issues urgently, today.

1: Publish national education plan for the next 10 years
2: Give details of the structural changes
3: Give details of the Standard Based Curriculum
4: Identify examination years and give details of examined subjects

5: Clearly explain what would happen to National High Schools (Schools of Excellence) and at Primary and Secondary schools.

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