2 Responses

  1. Somandin Afuyave
    Somandin Afuyave December 7, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    in the early 1990s there were also some changes to the lower education sector. these changes includes the reform from non-formal tokples pre-school to elementary school, community school to primary school and provincial high school to secondary school. whilst the GoPNG concentrates on these reforms we forgot that the actual out put of this reforms will be the input to the tertiary education sector.

    after 10 years and on-wards we are seeing the effects of this reforms by having the number of our grade twelves increasing and many missing out on spaces in the tertiary education sector. with the current TFF policy and the removal of grades 8 and 10 exam will only make it more challenging for us to absorb ever increasing number of students.

    these reforms are not bad for the country but are things we want and planned for, but we have failed to strike a balance in reforming our tertiary education sector to match the expected outcome of our reforms.

    recommendation.
    the GoPNG should now concentrate on providing quality to the lower education sector and improve excess and quality in the higher education sector.

    1. Anthony Swan
      Anthony Swan December 7, 2016 at 1:50 pm

      Hi Somandin,

      Thanks for your comment. You raise an important point – as more students enter primary school and then progress into secondary school, what can students expect to do once they finish grade 12? As you say, these reforms should also provide students with pathways for continued development beyond secondary school. The TFF does fund vocational education and training but as a policy it does not connect with the higher education sector. Is this “access cliff”, where large numbers of secondary school leavers cannot get into university, the best approach? Open distance education will help to a degree but it is not a close substitute to direct university education as far as I can tell.

      Perhaps a better approach is to not completely do away with academic standards for entry to secondary school, thereby limiting numbers until the capacity of the entire education system (including universities) can handle higher growth in student numbers. There are important trade-offs that are implicitly being made in PNG’s education policy. These trade-offs should be more openly acknowledged and discussed, and broad agreement reached on what is the best approach to take.
      Tony

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