Showing posts with label Politics and TFF policy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Politics and TFF policy. Show all posts

Annual report of the Department of Education for the year 2022 (No Child is Left Behind)

Executive Summary:

In his address to the National Parliament on the 1st of August, 2023, the Papua New Guinea Education Minister highlighted the significant achievements, challenges, and policy interventions undertaken by the Department of Education in the 2022 Academic Year. 

The minister expressed gratitude to the Marape-Rosso government and various stakeholders for their unwavering support and outlined six critical areas, including the successful transition to the standard-based curriculum, strategic reforms in education, the establishment of Schools of Excellence, decentralisation initiatives, the effective implementation of tuition fee subsidies, and efforts to address infrastructure needs. 

He emphasised the government's commitment to ensuring no child is left behind and underscored the pivotal role of education in nation-building. The comprehensive report, spanning 122 pages, provides valuable insights into the department's endeavours and sets the stage for continued collaboration and support in the academic year 2023.

Education Department Annual Report

See the budget breakdown for education here.

Minister's Statement:

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I am grateful for the opportunity to present the annual report of the Department of Education for the year 2022. I would like to express my appreciation to the honourable members of parliament for granting me leave to make this statement in connection with the reports.

Mr. Speaker, education holds a paramount place in our society, and it is with great honour that I present the 2022 annual report for the Department of Education to the National Parliament. Our department has consistently presented its annual report to this esteemed house, underscoring the significance of education for every citizen.

Before delving into the highlights of the report, I would like to extend, on behalf of the 2.3 million children and numerous parents, our sincere gratitude to the Marape-Rosso government. Despite the economic challenges facing our nation, the government has accorded the highest priority to education. I would also like to acknowledge the unwavering support of every governor and Member of Parliament in advancing the cause of education.

Mr. Speaker, education is the key that unlocks knowledge, talent, skills, and development, fostering prosperity for a nation. It is the common denominator, the foundation upon which societies and nations are built. Therefore, it is our duty to ensure that no child is left behind, irrespective of space, gender, religion, ethnicity, or disability. Every child has the right to education from elementary to grade 12, and we are obligated to provide that.

The Department's 2022 annual report, a comprehensive document spanning 122 pages, offers insights into the performances, achievements, and challenges encountered while implementing policies during the 2022 Academic Year. I urge every minister to peruse the report at their convenience.

In the interest of time, I will highlight six critical policies, achievements, and challenges outlined in the report:

  • 1. Successful transition from the outcome-based curriculum to the standard-based curriculum (SBC), with the completion of the phasing-in of SBC into the education system in 2022. The development phase of the SBC syllabus and teacher guides for all subjects and grades is also complete.
  • 2. Significant progress in the five-year strategic plan for education reform and expansion, with notable increases in enrollments, particularly in secondary schools.
  • 3. Establishment of Schools of Excellence to cater to highly talented students, with a focus on STEM education. A total of 220 STEM students graduated in 2022.
  • 4. Decentralisation of functions and activities to provincial governments, including education laws, payroll, and salary management.
  • 5. Successful government tuition fee subsidy implementation, with a total disbursement of 792 million Kina in 2022.
  • 6. Addressing infrastructure needs and responsibilities at various school levels, emphasising the need for clarity in roles and responsibilities.

In conclusion, I express gratitude to the Marape-Rosso government, members of parliament, governors, partners, stakeholders, and the dedicated team at the Department of Education. Your continued support ensures the success of the education sector. I look forward to ongoing collaboration in the academic year 2023. May God bless you all, and thank you for your attention to government business.

Final remarks:

In closing, the Minister's talk about the Department of Education's yearly report for 2022 highlights how important education is for our country to grow. The report talks about what went well, what challenges were faced, and the plans made to make sure every child gets a good education. 

The Minister said thank you to the government, members of parliament, governors, partners, and everyone in the education team for working together to make education better.

PNG Vision 2050: A Roadmap for a Prosperous Future - Where to Now?

PNG Vision 2050


Papua New Guinea (PNG) Vision 2050 is a long-term development plan that aims to transform the country into a smart, fair, and prosperous nation by the year 2050. The vision was launched in 2009 and has been updated in 2016, with a strategic focus on creating a sustainable economy, society, and environment.

Mission and vision

The mission of PNG Vision 2050 is to create a society that is smart, fair, healthy, wealthy, and happy. It seeks to transform the country by leveraging its rich natural resources and human capital to achieve:

  • Sustainable economic growth
  • Social development
  • Environmental protection
  • Strategic visions

PNG Vision 2050

PNG Vision 2050 Strategic Visions

PNG Vision 2050 identifies eight strategic visions that the country should focus on to achieve its long-term development goals:

1. Human capital development: To create a highly educated and skilled workforce that is productive, innovative, and globally competitive.

2. Wealth creation: To promote sustainable economic growth by leveraging the country's natural resources, developing industries, and creating job opportunities.

3. Institutional development: To build strong and effective institutions that promote good governance, accountability, and transparency.

4. Infrastructure development: To develop modern and efficient infrastructure that connects the country's regions, promotes economic growth, and enhances the quality of life of its citizens.

5. Environmental sustainability: To protect the country's rich biodiversity and natural resources by promoting sustainable development practices.

6. Security and stability: To ensure peace, security, and stability in the country, promoting social cohesion and a sense of national identity.

7. International participation: To engage actively with the international community and promote Papua New Guinea's interests in the global arena.

8. Spiritual, cultural, and community development: To preserve and promote the country's diverse cultures, traditions, and values, and strengthen the sense of community and national identity.

Urgent actions to meet PNG Vision 2050

To achieve its long-term development goals, PNG needs to take urgent actions in various areas. These actions include:

Strengthening institutions: 

PNG needs to build strong and effective institutions that promote good governance, accountability, and transparency.

Investing in human capital: 

The country needs to invest in education and training to develop a skilled and productive workforce that is globally competitive.

Developing infrastructure: 

PNG needs to invest in modern and efficient infrastructure that connects the country's regions, promotes economic growth, and enhances the quality of life of its citizens.

Promoting environmental sustainability:

PNG needs to adopt sustainable development practices that protect its rich biodiversity and natural resources.

PNG Vision 2050 achievements and the road ahead

PNG has made some progress towards achieving the goals of Vision 2050 in the past decade. 

From 2009 to 2019, the country achieved an average annual economic growth rate of 2.7%, reduced poverty from 39% to 37%, increased the literacy rate from 60% to 63%, and expanded access to basic services such as health and education.

Recently, the ADB economic forecast for PNG shows that the country's GDP is expected to grow by 3.5% in 2022 and 4.9% in 2023 and inflation rates forecasted at 6.5% in 2022 and 5.1% in 2023

png vision 2050 - ADB economic forecast for PNG shows that the country's GDP is expected to grow by 3.5% in 2022 and 4.9% in 2023 and inflation rates forecasted at 6.5% in 2022 and 5.1% in 2023

Address challenges immediately

Despite ADB's positive forecast for 2023, much more needs to be done before 2029, 2039, and 2049 to achieve the goals of PNG Vision 2050 fully. 

The country needs to address challenges such as 

  • corruption, 
  • inadequate infrastructure, 
  • low human capital, and 
  • environmental degradation. 
Papua New Guinea's government must continue to invest in its people and infrastructure, promote good governance, and work towards building a sustainable future for all its citizens.

Medium-Term Development Plan and Actions

The PNG government has recognised the importance of Vision 2050 and has outlined a Second Medium Term Development Plan for 2018-2022 to help achieve its goals. 

The plan prioritises the development of infrastructure, education, healthcare, and the private sector, with a focus on improving the livelihoods of the rural population and promoting inclusive growth.

Moreover, the government has launched various initiatives to support the realization of Vision 2050. For example, the National Development Bank of PNG provides loans to support small and medium-sized enterprises, and the Tuition Fee-Free policy has increased access to education for many children in the country.

Despite these efforts, the country still faces significant challenges. For example, PNG has one of the lowest human development indexes in the world, and poverty remains a significant issue, with over a third of the population living below the poverty line.

PNG Government Urgent Action Prior to 2029, 2039 and 2049

To address these challenges, the PNG government ( prior to 2029, 2039 and 2049) needs to continue 

  • investing in infrastructure, education, and healthcare, promoting good governance and accountability, 
  • developing sustainable economic models, and 
  • addressing issues such as climate change and environmental degradation, which pose significant threats to the country's long-term development goals.

Conclusion -  PNG Vision 2050

PNG Vision 2050 provides a roadmap for PNG to achieve sustainable economic growth, social development, and environmental protection. While the country has made progress towards its long-term goals, much more needs to be done to ensure that Vision 2050 is fully realized. 

Above all, the PNG government must continue investing in human capital and infrastructure, promoting good governance and accountability, and developing sustainable economic models to build a better future for all its citizens.

Is 10 Years of Free Education Policy Addressing the Education for All Agenda 2030?

The free education policy was implemented at different stages in PNG since independence. The 'Implementation' in the earlier years was short-lived because they were introduced just before the national general elections

PNG Insight's in-depth analysis of the TFF (Tuition Fee Free Policy since 2012), shows that the Free Education Policy misses the Education for All Agenda 2030. 

Though the policy intent was valid, there were serious issues affecting the funding, implementation, monitoring and governing aspects of the policy. 

Free Education Policy - Education for All

After 10 years (2012 - 2022), there is little to show for - no policy platform, no review and no strategic planning. 

So, how does the PNG govt, now or after the election, provide a STRONG POLICY PLATFORM for the Free Education Policy to really address the Education for ALL agenda?

Here is a Tweet that aims to put the spotlight on this very issue - and get people talking!

India's Education for All Act

The Rights to Education Act in India sets in stone the government's responsibility to educate every child. It is no longer a political point-scoring agenda, but a development agenda. 

In brief, the Act titled  “the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act” was passed by the Indian Parliament in August 2009. When the Act came into force in 2010, India became one among 135 countries where education is a fundamental right of every child. [RTE, 2010]

In PNG context, this is a timely discussion because the country just does not (again) wait for elections to come around so that pesty politicians can go around 'kicking the TFF policy like a rugby ball'.

Also. the senior education officers should NOT just sit up there and let 'blue fly' zoom past. It is time to appropriately look at what is happening around the world and advise the government accordingly. 

Education Fund (similar to the SWF) - why?

The Sovereign Wealth Fund is not a new concept, it has been around for a long time. Yet PNG govts, past and present, are finding it hard to come to terms with it.

In fact, the 'SWF is not a recent development but a product of more than a century of evolution. The first SWF can be traced back to the U.S Texas Permanent School Fund in 1854 which got its funding from oil revenue. The original $2 million fund was created for the purpose of helping the public schools in Texas and has since snowballed to more than $30 billion today.' [PNG Insight Writer's Corner]

Since 2012, the PNG govt spent around K600 million per year on keeping the TFF policy going. 

At this average spending, about K6 BILLION will have been spent on TFF education policy to 2022 - that's billion with nine zeros. K6,000,000,000.

Funding this policy is like 'looking for the loose coins' in the pocket. For the last 10 years, the PNG govt simply looks to the donors and what tax money they have to keep the policy going. 

In retrospect, a clever govt will have invested the money and let the interests pay for the policy. 

SWF Education Fund Education for all

When should the PNG govt enact a law on Education For All?


It will be too late and more money will be wasted if this act is delayed any further. There are people within the education department with enough law degrees and PhDs who can do that.

It is not like they are going to do something new. There are 135 countries in the world that have this law that legally makes Education for All a right! And, the governments as bound by the Constitution to fund the policy.

At present, PNG does not have a Right to Education for All Act. What we see for the last 10 years is simply politics at play.

The great thing about this Act is that no one govt is going to 'kick the TFF policy around like a political rugby ball' anymore.

You can see my work on TFF policy in PNG on the PNG Insight website, including the pros and cons of SWF at PNG Writers Corner - see the blue links in this article.

Follow PNG Insight on YouTube and Twitter.

PNG Govt Tuition Fee Subsidy 2021 - Press Release

PNG School fees and subsidies 2021


This public notice formally announces the PNG Government’s GTFS policy for 2021. In 2021, the government is maintaining the Tuition Fee Subsidy (GTFS) Policy. Under the GTFS, the government is committed to its policy on partnership and to make education a shared responsibility between the national government, provincial governments, DDAs, parents, churches and other stakeholders.


The Marape government reiterates its profound conviction that education is a powerful tool that will transform and sustain our prosperity and therefore will maintain education as a priority policy.

The Marape government is committed to giving every child 13 years of quality education under a standard based education system including a standard-based curriculum that provides an effective platform for measuring children’s performance and for teachers to use evidence to continuously improve childrens’ learning so that they continue to make progress towards fully attaining the benchmarks and hence the attainment of content standards.

We will ensure: 

  • the 1-6-6 school structure that phases out elementary schools and moves grade 1 and 2 into primary schools; 
  • a robust standards assurance system maintained; multiple pathways with FODE and VET for students is provided; 
  • Schools of Excellence implemented; Early Childhood education formalized; and 
  • schools’ functioning have sustained funding from both government and parents.

The Government will prioritise FODE and will from this year pay the full tuition fees. In other words, FODE will be fee-free and will be established in all high and secondary schools from 2021.


The Government Tuition Fee Subsidy (GTFS) Policy underscores its principle to make education cost of our children a partnership between governments, parents, churches and the local communities. We have seen the last regime making our people lazy, detached parents from schools and systematically removed their interest in schools. 

We want to disengage and cut out the dependency syndrome that we have systematically allowed into our PNG culture. The shift in the school financing policy by the Marape government is deliberate to get parents and communities to plough the soil and work hard, and contribute to reviving the economy than creating a ‘handout culture’ and a dependency syndrome.

Papua New Guineans are naturally hard-working, resilient and self-reliant. The GTFS policy will re-establish the missing link between the parents and schools while the Government will invest in raising the quality of education, building more schools and making school managers and boards more accountable.


The total funding for the Government Tuition Fee Subsidy Policy (GTFS) in 2021 will be K486,351,600. This funding remains the same as in 2020. GTFS will have two components:

  • a School Operations and Functional Grant of K388,351,600 (80%) and 
  • a Commodity component of K97,000,000 (20%). 
We will look into a decentralized procurement model that can encourage SMEs but at the same time is affordable and ensures standards and equity.


The following table shows the Total fees per NEB Maximum Fee limits for each component and by sector.

Table 1: Total Tuition Cost and Fee Limits in Kina
Total Tuition Cost and Fee Limits in Kina
NB: The Approved Permitted Schools are no longer supported by the GTFS Policy.
The State will pay the full FODE Fees.  


Given the budget allocation, the State Contribution component will be 62% of the total NEB Maximum School Fee Limit cost and parents will pay 38%.

The actual unit fees to be paid by the state and parents based on the 62/38 sharing model for each student per sector will be as follows:

Table 2: 2021 Student Unit Tuition Fee By Sector in Kina
2021 Student Unit Tuition Fee By Sector in Kina


Parents will be required to pay fifty percent (50%) of the Parental Contribution fee at the start of the school year and the balance must be paid before the end of Term 2. The government will pay its component before the end of Term 3.


Schools are allowed to collect Project Fees, but they must follow very strict approval guidelines. The Provincial Education Board is the only authority to approve a project fee for schools after it has received a School Learning Improvement Plan (SLIP), a Project Plan, Scope and Budget with a P&C Association agreement. 

Where Project Fees are to be collected, it must be less than 20 percent (20%) of the Maximum Fee limit per student rate set by the National Education Board as shown below.

Table 3: Project Fees Limits for 2021
Project Fees Limits for 2021


Church agency fees are to be paid by each student attending a church agency school as per the Education Act, 1983. Provincial Education Boards will set and approve the fees, but must not be above the maximum limits set below.

a) Preparatory/Elementary – K5.00
b) Primary – K7.00
c) High/Secondary and Vocational – K10.00


NO school administration or governing board is to refuse any child from enrolling in school or attending classes for non-payment of any form of fees. Special arrangements should be made between the parents and the school to pay the required fees over a period in the school year. 

Whilst every child has the right to education, schools also need funds to operate, therefore parents are encouraged to cooperate with school boards and pay their component of 38% as early as possible.


Provincial Governments and District Development Authorities are the immediate authorities responsible for the education of students in the general education sector, within their respective jurisdictions.

In the spirit of partnership, we urge every Provincial Government and District Development Authority to help their schools, and especially parents who may struggle to pay their
38% component of the fees. 

Eight provinces (East New Britain, East Sepik, Eastern Highlands, Enga, Milne Bay, Morobe, New Ireland and Northern have signed MOAs with the National Government to manage national government school fee grants/subsidies. We will honour our commitment and enhance further collaboration and partnership.


Self-reliance is a standing policy of the department. However, the current take-up of self-reliance projects by schools is low. Schools have become too dependent on fees and subsidies in the recent past. 

Hence per the NEB recommendation at its last meeting, I direct every school to generate 10% of its school’ budget through self-reliance projects. Schools will comply with this direction in 2021.


The State is committed to education and pays the bulk of the cost of education for each child through teacher salaries, teacher training, standards assurance, curriculum and examinations, infrastructure, and grants, apart from the GTFS policy funding.

The Government’s Tuition Fee Subsidy Policy that advocates sharing the cost of education will continue in our endeavour to provide a sustainable education system for our children.

I thank all parents and stakeholders for your continued partnership in sharing the responsibility in the education of our children.

Any further explanation of the policy can be obtained from the Department of Education Website: or by sending an email to or calling phones: 328 888 00/73350746/32 888 661/72668181.

Authorized by:
(4th January 2021)

- Re-published - 


The Public Accounts Committee has announced that it has initiated its inquiry into the Tuition Fee-Free (TFF) policy.
The policy, a key policy of the former O'Neill Government has seen billions of kinas spent annually on TFF.

investigation into TFF education policy
Read about the TFF policy on PNG Insight (

However since its inception in 2012 - reports have revealed a massive drop in the quality of education despite millions having access.

PAC Chairman Sir John Pundari said notices have been sent to the Education Department to provide information to the Inquiry in October of this year and officers will be summoned and Hearings will commence in 2020.

 Sir John said the Committee has already received evidence from concerned individuals uncovering gross abuse of the TFF policy. 

He said Ghost schools and school boards have allegedly been paid.  

The PAC Chairman said other reports received by the PAC show an organized scam involving Education Department officials and certain school boards where deliberate overpayments were made.

The Inquiry comes at a time when the Marape-Steven Government has announced a fifty percent cut in the TFF policy for 2020.

Meantime, the PAC is currently dealing with Inquiry into the millions of kinas worth of contracts for the procurement of medical drugs and supplies by the national Department of Health has already uncovered gross abuse of systems and bribery among others.

Members of the PAC will visit health centers and aid-posts throughout the country this month as part of the Inquiry. 

 PAC recommences early 2020.

 NBC News- Lyanne Togiba
Picture: PAC

Subsidised Education Policy Vs Tuition Fee Free Education Policy

Reports have indicated that there is going to be a change in the Free Education policy in PNG. The free education policy (Tuition Fee Free, TFF) was first hinted to have been implemented in 2011 and rolled out nationwide in 2012 by the PNC government. The TFF policy has its fair share of implementation dilemmas. Read about it here

The new education policy follows a fee subsidy model. The policy, we shall call the Subsidised Education Policy, is a user-pay policy. But not in its entirety. The government may have resolved/planned to pay 50% and parents pay 50% of the school fee component.

The problems are that it is not clear at the moment whether the government will also subsidise the school development projects (captured in the School Learning and Improvement Plans, SLIPs); and materials and infrastructure components. 

The TFF funds have struggled to capture those 3 components in the past 8 years. In what is known as the 30:30:40 components (READ MORE HERE):

1. School Learning Materials - 30% of TFF Grant
2. MPs PSIP and DSIP - 30% of TFF grant
3. Cash Grant for schools - 40% of TFF allocation

It would be interesting so watch this space for more detail. Or check out this link for more information on the TFF policy since 2012. 

In fact, it is going to be interesting. So parents, plan well for next year - get the school fees ready. Time to take some responsibilities. 

Meanwhile, below are two re-posts in relation to the change in TFF policy to a subsided education policy now in motion.  

PARENTS TO PAY SCHOOL FEES: Parents and guardians will pay half of their children’s school fees following a 50 percent cut in the Tuition Fee Free funding.

Department of Treasury Secretary Dairi Vele says the government will instead introduce and fund the Higher Education Loan Program for tertiary students.
"What we are doing is to ensure government and parents share the burden, kairm pikinini lukautim pikinini," said Vele.
Mr. Vele says these students will repay the loan after they graduate and find employment. 
He was speaking during the 2020 Budget Press Lockup at the State Function Room at the Parliament precinct yesterday. 

NBC News- Grace Tiden

OPPOSITION SAY SCRAPPING TFF WILL BE DISASTER: The (Papua New Guinea) Opposition is predicting a spike in social problems with the government's announcement to scrap the Tuition Fee Free or free education policy.

Presenting the 2020 National Budget in Parliament yesterday, Treasurer, Ian Ling-Stuckey, revealed that parents and guardians will start paying their children's fees from elementary level up to grade 12 starting next year.

The TFF will only be reserved for students who make it to tertiary level education, under what would be known as a Higher Education Loan Program.

But Opposition Leader Belden Namah, told NBC News, scrapping the TFF would be a disaster for the country.

"We want to make our country align with the United Nations Charter on universal education, so this is an injustice to our people.'
"Now that the TFF is gone, people are going to flood to their members and ask for school fees and if you cant give them they will vote you out.
"Instead of doing away with TFF completely, the government should meed 60-percent and parents meet 40-percent.
"I can tell you a lot of parents won't pay for school fees and we will have a lot of young people just sitting around doing nothing at all and we will have more law and order problems in this country," Said Beldon Namah.

NBC News- Kelvin Kasper

Free Education in PNG Poll Result - Investigate TFF Funds

The policy started in 2011 and implemented nationwide in 2012 by the then government under Peter O'Neill ministership and spearheaded by the then Education Minister Nick Kuman (now Minister for Department of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology, DHERST). 

A detailed review of the policy titled Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education can be found via the link.

In a recent online poll on Twitter, PNG Insight followers were asked what new PNG Government under PM James Marape and new Education Minister should do about the free education policy, the Tuition Fee Free Education (TFFE) Policy. 

Poll result

The result indicated that there is a need to investigate the TFFE funds allocated to schools, private companies and MPs since 2012. It is a massive task, but if done properly the investigation could set the foundation for better education policy relating to free education in the country. 


The Marape-Steven Government will be re-looking the Tuition Fee free policy - a key policy of the former Government.
TFF policy/Facebook/NBC News

The policy introduced in 2012, enabling access to education for over one million of the country's young, has seen approximately four billion kina invested to date.

In Parliament yesterday, Prime Minister James Marape, while commending the former Government for the policy said it has both good and bad sides – and needs to be relooked.

He said the Government does not want to encourage lazy citizens, rather productive ones.

“There are also downsides to it, in as far as the quality interventions are concerned.

Many of our parents and citizens have pulled back, thinking that is 100 percent Government obligation.

We will look into that policy as well without putting burden on our parents and citizens. 

We are looking into a program where there is a shared responsibility. 

I am divorcing and distancing from an absolute free education in our lower level systems but we are working at a higher education – skills level, college level, certificate level.

And we are trying to share arrangement at the lower level, I have citizens from my electorate who are adults – they say Government is paying for free education and they are not responding or contributing to the economy but are instead lazying their way through life,” Mr. Marape said.

Meantime, Papua New Guineans attending tertiary institutions in the country can expect to get some assistance with their tuition fees by 2020.

This following the announcement by Prime Minister James Marape in Lae recently, of the setting up of an 'endowment fund' that will see students benefiting from interest-free loans.

Mr. Marape elaborated on this today in Parliament, saying the Government understands the current burden that families have to pay annually for fees - which lies in the K5-000 to K20-000 mark.

He said the catch is that - all students will now have to register through the National Identification project in order to benefit from this scheme.

Mr. Marape was responding to questions by North Fly MP James Donald regarding the Government's announcement of an endowment fund to assist students at the tertiary level.

Source: NBC News 9th October 2019

30:30:40 TFF Funds Allocation Needed Clarity from 3 Key Stakeholders

This post revisits the joint ministerial statement by the, then, Education Minister and Education Secretary in 2016 regarding the Tuition Fee Free policy statement. The statement clearly showed the 30:30:40 breakdown of TFF grants. This post also highlights the key stakeholders of the policy.

Here is the 2016 joint press release and summerised in diagram below..

TFF funds allocation 2018

First, the Top 6 schools in the country that received the highest funds in 2018 as published by the NDoE in January 2019 are:


You can see how much money your school or province receive here. The list was originally published by National Department of Education  (NDoE) on itswebsite in pdf form. 

PNG Insight rearranges the list of TFF-receiving schools in tabular form. This makes it easier to identify a particular school. Or, you can group school into a province, and identify how much  money each school is receiving in 2018.

Perhaps it is important to note that TFF grants given to schools in 2012 - 2017 are not available in the public domain, except the 2018 shown here.

School Learning Materials - 30% of TFF Grant

The Students' Supplies component of 30% is, also, an area needing clarity. The financial reports for the last 7 years for this component was not clearly reported on, or made available to public.

A private company has been allocated the money to procure and supply students learning materials. In fact, a dual secretarial and ministerial media statement in 2016 indicated that 30% of the TFF grant was allocated to Procurement and Supplies yearly. That is 30% of >K600 million every year in the hands of the private company.

So, has the procurement and distribution company delivered quality learning materials to schools? 

This year over K79 million was released to the private company to deliver materials for 2019. It is nearly half a year, but many schools have been waiting to receive the learning materials, unfortunately.

MPs PSIP and DSIP - 30% of TFF grant 

All schools in every district - elementary, primary and secondary - must receive help from their local MPs through the District Service Improvement Program funds released to the MPs. 

School infrastructure developments plans done by the school board, and captured in the school development plans or SLIPs, must be funded by the district grants.

Additionally, provincial governments through the provincial treasury must actively fund the development of school infrastructure in the country.

Why is there little-to-nothing to show for in the elementary, primary, high and secondary schools in the country?

Questions should be raised as to where the MPs have put the DSIP/PSIP grants meant for education and school infrastructure development, had the funds not reached the districts, schools and people.

Cash Grant for schools - 40% of TFF allocation

As mentioned earlier, 60% of TFF grants are in the hands of this private company and MPs - a lot of money. The NDoE deals with the 40% cash grant into school accounts, directly.

All in all, the ministerial statement 2016 clearly gave the break-down of the TFF grant into 30:30:40 components. Money meant for TFF policy are managed by the private  co, MPs and NDoE.

What is completely missing is transparency shown by the key stakeholders ( private company, NDoE and MPs) in the delivery of TFF policy.

The stakeholders will admit that there were obvious problems with TFF policy. Since 2012, TFF funds marked in the budgetary allocations have been more than the actual figures released. TFF grants were released to schools late.

The 3 key stakeholders have problems getting TFF monies on time.

But, regardless of the late disbursements monies and school supplies, in many cases,  the people MUST know over K600 million of TFF money have been disbursed to schools, the private company and MPs yearly.

Therefore, every stakeholder must demand that financial and transaction reports are produced promptly.

It is common knowledge that there is a complete lack on transparency on reporting, or the accounts do not balance out, IF no financial balance sheet is published to date.

This surmounts to a failure in the way the policy is implemented. Furthermore, when the books do not balance, there is something seriously wrong. And needed fixing.

There are whispers in the education corridors that the 30:30:40 components had been readjusted in 2018. However, there is no media statement or published document from the NDoE to confirm that the adjustment.

If that happened, it is canny that stakeholders did *not* know about the recent TFF component adjustment.

And, what is the new break-down?

Read more about the recommendations of a TFF policy research here.
  • The private company releases the financial report of procurement and supply of students learning materials,
  • The MPs have clearly identified how much they spent on school infrastructure development in their districts, and
  • The NDoE publishes the TFF grant yearly report for 2012 - 2017. Note that the 2018 TFF report was published early this year, 2019.
Finally, the TFF policy is a cornerstone policy for the PNG goverment and for the country. The policy needs fine-tuning. 

PNG is better placed, at present, to deliver a better tuition fee (EDUCATION FEE) policy given its experiences in the last 8 years.

2019 Second Quarter TFF Grant of K105 Million Not Released to Schools 2 Weeks Before Qtr Ends

Some ten secondary and high schools in Milne Bay Province have unanimously decided to end term two prematurely this week, after no tuition fee funds have reached the province this term.

News source: NBC News Milne Bay/Facebook

A Headmaster’s group meeting held this week saw a general consensus to hold board meetings for this decision to be effected within this week.

Chairman of Milne Bay’s Principals & Headmasters Group Ishamel Aurere was frank, he says they’ve operated without funds the entire term and especially for boarding schools, they are now in the red.

“Especially in terms of sustaining the boarding part of schools, because most of us are boarding institutions. Up until now, we have not heard anything on TFF for this term and it's the only area schools depend on for their operations so as we come towards end of term two, no word on TFF from national Government. 

It is very unlikely for schools to hold on until the end of the term. Our deliberations last week ended with the advice each school should return to hold emergency board meetings to effect this decision or to come up with alternatives to hold on."

He says expenses however are not all boarding student rations based, schools had overhead costs such as electricity and water for town based schools and general operations that needs funds for.

He says the decision was unanimous.

“All the schools have not received their component of TFF up to last week so we do not know as to each school's situation and we've given them these options but it's likely most of them will see a premature end to the term".

He says school heads have been reminded to keep within proper channels so it’s likely they will hold emergency board meetings early next week to effect the early shutdown of classes for term two.

Six secondary schools and four high schools in Milne Bay will be affected.

These include Cameron, Hagita, Holy Name, Watuluma, Misima and Wesley Secondary Schools and Suau, Cape Vogel, Kiriwina and Kuiaro High Schools.

This does not include primary schools but it’s highly they are also in the same boat.

Cameron Secondary School in the heart of Alotau when contacted this morning confirms they officially sent off students today. 
They were finishing off with tests and exam paper corrections today, before being sent off for possibly a months' term holiday, classes to resume third week of July.

Principal Edward Malona reveals, "Teachers here however will take only a week's leave and will be spending three weeks to put in place strategies for catch up work for classes missed as they've just completed their term exams."

We sought comments from local Education Advsior Roma Tuidam who tells us the matter has been brought to the department by Alotau MP Charles Abel who reveals, Education Secretary Dr Uke Kombra has advised him they’ve received an initial K25 million and this will be disbursed to high and secondary schools this week, however they are in need of a further K80 million for all schools.

Source: Facebook/NBC Milne Bay

Advantage of Tuition Fee Free Policy: Education Ministry and Department Partner with Churches - Key

PNG Human Development Index (HDI) trend showed that 1995 was the year when PNG lost development momentum it gained after 1975 Independence. The government recognising churches and the National Department of Education as the main actors in education development could be an advantage for achieving long term plans.

Advantages of TFF policy in PNG

PNG development fluctuates -struggle to improve

Corruption in high public offices after the 1992 election is the direct effect of 30 years (to 2022) when PNG is recently classed as a Low Human Development Country. 

Many Papua New Guineas are asking has PNG made improvements in the recent HDI global rank? Sadly, the answer is no. PNG's HDI ranks yo-yos between 153 and 154 out of 188 countries - up or down by 1 point. 

That means the measured global index showed PNG progress is less to nill in the last 10 years to 2020.

What went wrong? 

Government past and present development policies have been 'reactionary' rather than 'strategic for the long term'.

The changes (Curriculum, School Structure, Free Education Policy, Examination and Standard Measurements) have direct effects on development.

Free Education Policy can only be sustainable if the Churches and the Education Department are the main ACTORS. Unfortunately, NDoE and Churches are spectators in this TFF policy - 60% of the TFF grant is handled by entities other than NDoE or Church establishments.

What matters in PNG Education

In fact, NDoE and Churches have the capacity/network to deliver the Govt's TFF policy. No doubt.

The provincial and district network has been established since 1975. The 60% (~K400 million) allocated by the govt can be, rightfully, pumped into churches and NDoE - direct. 

A detailed write-up on this topic can be found here and here

The Reason 10 Secondary School Principals Suspended - TFF

In a press release the Education Minister announced the suspension of 10 scondary school principals. Most of the schools are in the National Capital District. The 8 schools (out of 10) mentoned were :
1. Vanimo Secondary School
2. Tokarara Secondary School
3. Kilakila Secondary School
4. Gerehu Secondary School
5. Koiari Park Secondary School
6. Marianville Secondary School
7. Della Salle Secondary School and 
8. Jubilee Catholic Secondary School

The reason was that those schools were beneficaries under the TFF policy, but imposed extra fees contrary to the National Education directive not to charge any other fees. 

The directive in full below.

All school Principals of National and Provincial Institutions in the National Education System are reminded of the NEC Decision No. 01/2016 of 04th February 2016 that NOSCHOOL  that receives Tuition Fee Free (TFF) funding imposes any fees including project fees, church agency fees, etc. from students, parents or guardians.

The public is informed that the National Government hasn’t changed its’ Policy on Tuition Fee Free education for all children currently in schools around the country.

Schools and institutions legally operating under the National Education System that are covered by the Tuition Fee Free Policy include elementary, primary, secondary, Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET), Flexible Open & Distance Education (FODE) and Inclusive Education Resource Centers.

The Department of Education has received complaints from parents, guardians and students that school administrations and school boards have asked parents to pay fees prior to enrolment. This is against the Government policy direction, and is deemed illegimate, and against official instructions.

Parents and other Stakeholders are invited to report any particular school or institution asking for any kind of fees as a condition of enrolment to the Provincial Education Advisor, School Inspector or the Department of Education on phone 301 3437.

Parents and community members of schools may support and contribute voluntarily to improve school building and facilities to improve teaching and learning.

The Department of Education also informs Schools and Institutions that K97million withheld from 2018 will be released next week and paid into school accounts to commence the new school year.

A further K616million for this year will be disbursed on a quarterly basis. This is an increase of K15million from 2018.

All Stakeholders and parents are reminded that the 2019 School Year begins on the 21st of January 2019 for teachers and students resume classes on the 28th January 2019.

[Education] Secretary

So, is it the Education Ministry and the National Educaton Department fair on suspension of the 8 secondary school principals?

Here is the attempt to address the question of 'Fairness'⇐.



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Latest on Vote of No Confidence in Papua New Guinea 2024