Education is New Ireland top priority in 2021 - Sir Julius Chan

The Division of Education in New Ireland is ready to move forward after it had frank and open talks with the New Ireland Government and the Provincial Administration on Thursday. 

Governor Sir Julius Chan in an unusual “call out” to reprioritize Education as a pivotal sector invited the Provincial Education board to a round table talk at the New Ireland Legislative Assembly conference room. Present was Chairlady Dr Kappa Malpo, Acting Director Education Wesley Siangat, Appointment officer Gerard Bekeman, Acting Manager Standards Patrick Neman, Senior Primary School Inspector George Choi, District Education Co-ordinator Renson Warkurai, Inspector Godfrey Lutham and Chaiman Education in PEC Felix Katibum, Provincial Administrator Lamiller Pawut, CEO Finance Richard Andia and Director Subsidy Iola Tamtu.

Sir Julius Chan Education Priority
Image: New Ireland Media Unit/Facebook 2021

Recommended read: Sir Julius Chan Life in Politics - A Review of His Book ' Playing the Game

One of the key issues raised was on the standard of Education in the province and how to improve it. Findings included a lack of Qualified teachers teaching in all schools, a lack of School Inspectors to police standard and quality in schools, a lack of school infrastructure to accommodate the growing number of students, funding and constraints requiring improved management and financial trainings for school principles to maintain quality administration in their schools.

Dr Malpo also touched on the need to improve the provinces Min Rating Index (MRI) which is the performance average of students per school. “ We must aspire to give our best to each individual student if we are to see an improvement in our MRI’s. And the MRI’s have a correlation with the quality of teachers we have in our schools. We need qualified teachers and we must endeavour to get all teachers to Bachelor level,” said Dr Malpo.

The need for the introduction of more Flexible Open Distant Education ( FODE) into the province was also discussed. With the Educationists stating that just because a student does not do well through the normal education system does not mean that they are failures. Work on the setting up of the New Ireland University and Namatanai Technical college also continues.

Taking in the issues and suggestions by the Education team Governor Sir J relayed that while the New Ireland Government could not fix all the dilemma’s faced by the Education sector it could intervene in areas that are within the policy framework. 

He said his Government through the subsidy division has been actively allocating funds directly to schools and has sperate funding specifically for the upskilling of teachers who wish to pursue higher degrees and encouraged them to utilize the program. For infrastructure development he made particular emphasis on the West Coast Kulube was picked to have a new high school built. He encouraged the Education Division to think new when it came to the construction of the school. Separate meetings will be conducted to discuss more on the rollout of Education infrastructure in the province.

The Governor’s School of Excellence located at the Our Lady of the Sacred Heart (OLSH) International School is another positive outcome of Government policy. With a number of students selected through the policy getting high grades last year. 

Sir J thanked the Education Division representatives for taking time to really take stock of the current status of Education in the province, outlining areas of weakness and offering constructive solutions to improve the sector.

“ We cannot solve all the problems but we must adjust our priorities.  We all have our good and bad sides, we just need to choose and create a balance to move forward,” said Sir J.

According to New Ireland Education, it operates 560 schools. With a school a population of over 59, 765 and 2,160 teachers. The Province has improved its effort to deliver quality education across all sectors of education.

In 2019 grade 10s and 12s placed New Ireland in the Top 5 amongst other secondary schools in the country. NIP overall mean average index was 10 behind Pom, East New Britain and East Sepik. 

In 2020 the Covid pandemic contributed to almost 2 months of out of class time for all students in schools. The lost times were catered for through rearranged timetabling and extra classes in most of the examinable grades ( 8,10,12). According to results for performance in examinations for grade 8, the cut-off mark was 75 out of 150. The highest score was 146/150. For Grade 10 the MRI was 77%. All high schools moved up by 1 point. Lihir Secondary school came 10th in the country.

Source: New Ireland Provincial Govt Media Unit

UPNG Open College Application open for Grade 12 School Leavers

The University of Papua New Guinea, Open College (UPNG –OC) informs 2020 Grade 12 School Leavers that Applications to the External undergraduate degree programs is open and will close on the 30th of January 2021. 

If you are interested in enrolling, download the Application form and fill it in and lodge it at your nearest Open College Centre.

UPNG Open college application


UPNG OPEN COLLEGE Application 2021

Call for Applications to UPNG OPEN COLLEGE Undergraduate Degree/Diploma Programs 2021 (for 2020 Secondary High School Leavers)

Download the application form here. See the original message on the UPNG website.

 Applicants must take note of the following important points

1. Only 2020 Grade Leavers will be considered in this application call.

2. The following programs are on offer; Business Management Foundation Year, Science Foundation Year and Bachelor of Arts – Year 1

3. Science Foundation Year (SFY) is only offered at NCD OC Centre. Applicants must study ALL the following five subjects (L&L, Advance Maths, Chemistry, Physics and Biology in Grade 12 in order to be considered for UPNG Science Foundation.

4. If you are intending to enroll in any of the Open College Certificate programs, you must go to your nearest OC center with your grade 12 certificate and enquire about the programs on offer and you will be advised accordingly. Do not use this application form.

5. CTCS program will no longer admit new students in 2021 and onwards, only continuing students will enroll in this program.

6. UPNG-OC is no longer offering any upgrading of courses. You are advised to pursue a degree or complete a certificate program.

7. Navigate through our Open College website to confirm Entry Requirements and Eligibility criteria to the programs.

8. The normal fee for diploma and degree courses in K600 per course per semester. Science practical (Laboratory) based courses fee is K900 per course.

9. If you register in NCD Campus or Morobe University Centre, a compulsory surcharge fee of K60.00 is applicable in addition to your course fee.

10. The decision of the selectors is final. Any appeals will not be entertained.

_________//

This announcement was originally published on UPNG website.

Flexible Open and Distance Education (FODE) Enrolment

THE Government has urged parents to enrol their children who have dropped out of school into the Flexible Open and Distance Education (FODE) this year as it is free.


Education Minister Jimmy Uguro yesterday said no fees would be levied on FODE students and encouraged those who could not make it to the upper grades to enrol at their nearest Fode centre.

“Fode is fee-free this year,” Uguro said.

“Parents are not paying.

“The Government has paid the fees.

“This is to address the high turn-over of school dropouts each year.

“The Education Department has been tasked to attach FODE centres to high school and nominated primary schools in districts and provinces.

“A team from the Education Department is working on a plan to have all school leavers absorbed into the [FODE] system.

“This is so we can reduce the number of student dropouts doing nothing out there.

“As soon as school commences on Feb 1, FODE classes should also commence.”

Prime Minister James Marape said recently that the Government would offer an alternative education pathway to help those who dropped out of school. Uguro said the Covid-19 affected student’s learning last year which resulted in 17,000 students missing out on moving to the next level.

“FODE is free because we are accommodating the school leavers, we are opening up opportunities for those who have been left out, we are taking them on board,” he said.

“The FODE students will study the same contents and they will sit for the same exams.

“So no one should be left behind.

“All students should be educated equally. Last year, there was a big drop so the Government is addressing this issue through Fode.”

Uguro said teachers would be paid an allowance for teaching Fode.

He advised students interested in taking up Fode to check with the Fode centres in the provinces and districts because the Government was committed to starting the fee-free initiative this year.

Source: The National Newspaper ( By GYNNIE KERO, 12/01/2021)

2021 Acceptance List Delay: DHERST, Govt, HEIs and Stakeholders Anxious

The Department of Higher Education, Research, Science and Technology said they'll release the Acceptance List 2021 for Tertiary Institutions in the country on the 8th of January 2021. Many anxious students and parents are wondering why the acceptance list 2021 was not released as promised. We know that DHERST is doing its very best to get the acceptance list out. And, they will probably tell the stakeholders why they did not release the list on the second Friday of January 2021.

2021 Acceptance list dherst


A discussion - Acceptance list for PNG Institutions

In this article about the Acceptance List 2021, we attempt to discuss the nature of the Grade 12 selections, the 2021 Acceptance List and challenges of releasing the acceptance list on time. And, address many of the 'why' questions (see the comment thread in this article) relating to the release of selection list and acceptance list 2021.

The opinions are based on our personal experience since the inception of DHERST's online selection systems. We hope that it gives you an understanding of the whole process. 

For the status updates of PNG universities acceptance list, click here.

Grade 12 selections to the tertiary institutions

The selection of Grade 12 students takes place before the Acceptance List 2021 comes out. DHERST used the National Online Application System (NOAS) to capture students school leavers choices. And uses the National Online Selection System (NOSS) to, electronically, select students according to their choice on the online school leavers' form, the NOAS.

Before 2018, the Grade 12 students have only 1st, 2nd and 3rd choices they pre-fill on a manual school leavers form. The manual SLF is sent to Port Moresby where tertiary institutions in the country scour over the paper forms and select students - this is long gone. 

The online selection and 2021 acceptance list compilation will be the 3th year DHERST runs the online selection. 

The online selection system and acceptance is the best technological intervention implemented by the higher education department, DHERST. 

However, there seemed to be a certain weakness in the selection process as seen last year and this year with the delay of the 2021 acceptance list. We do not know exactly what caused the delay but we can only infer that it may be due to the Public Holiday. 

2021 Acceptance List Release 

As for this year, the 2021 acceptance list will be published before the TESAS Award list. The Post Courier reports on a statement by higher education department secretary mentioned that the 2021 acceptance list will be published in two parts
  • 2021 Acceptance List of School Leavers: formal list of all the students who will be enrolled for the first time at tertiary institutions in the country. 
  • TESAS Award List 2021: The final list of the students in 2021 acceptance list including their 'indicated' TESAS Award status.
DHERST indicated to have released the acceptance list on the second Friday of January 2021. This has not happened. 

We believe DHERST is working to get the 2021 acceptance list out to the public. Meanwhile, students, parents and citizens have to wait for the higher education department to make another announcement. 

The Post Courier reported that the TESAS Award list will be released in late January or February 2021. The reason being that 'DHERST will wait for all the Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in the country to confirm their selections listing before the final TESAS Award List comes out'.

Waiting for the HEIs in the country to send the confirmed list to DHERST can take ages. But, the Post Courier hinted that the final list could come out by late January or early February before the academic year starts.

Why Acceptance List 2021 Not Released, When Then?

Many students, parents and stakeholders were asking the same question, why was the list acceptance list 2021 not released on time. As mentioned, the process of selection, quality checks, confirming availability of spaces with HEIs, etc is challenging. DHERST must get it right so that they do not mess up the final acceptance list.

The final acceptance list for students to enrol at the universities (including the PNG Govt's scholarships details) should/will come out a few weeks before the academic year starts. 

If you are someone with a special circumstance (non-school leaver, school leaver, self-sponsored, etc ) and needed more time to prepare; make sure you mitigate the risks in good time before the academic year starts.

DHERST Selection Key Points

In a press release two years ago, the department of higher education said the students whose names appeared on the Grade 12 selection list must take note the three points
(1) Your personal details contained within your application has been forwarded to the Higher Education Institution which has selected you.
(2) You should expect to receive an admissions offer letter directly from your Higher Education Institution (HEI). The HEI will communicate directly with you to inform you on specific details. 
(3) If your Study Program receives scholarship awards from the National Government, you may be eligible for financial support through the Tertiary Education Student Assistance Scheme (TESAS). Your TESAS status is also indicated in this National Selection List. Please log in to the NOAS (apply.dherst.gov.pg) and check MyStatus section any time before the 22nd December 2018 for further details on how to access your scholarship. [DHERST , Press Release 2018]

 

Concerns if DHERST race past February

In the meantime, there is no need to worry, even February is approaching fast. Citizens and stakeholders must be patient. DHERST, since 2018, has done a fantastic job with the:
  • Online School Leavers Application (NOAS),
  • Online Selection System (NOSS),
  • Compiling and quality-checking the selection listings
  • Liaising with HEIs in the country, 
  • Publishing the acceptance listing for ALL the HEIs 

Of course, there should be concerns raised IF DHERST has gone past mid-February. But for now, the department needs all the support they can get from the PNG govt, institutions in the country, parents, citizens and stakeholders.

We ask that you join us on FacebookTwitter or YouTube for up-to-date education info on tertiary institution selections in the country, as they happen. In addition to PNG Insight Blog, we also run the PNG Insight website and PNG Mathematics Exam Resource website