Papua New Guinea
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PRIME MINISTER ADVOCATES FOR SECOND-CHANCE EDUCATION

The school leavers’ statistics continue to rise annually which prompted the government to establish the Flexible Open Distance Education (FODE) across the country in all High schools to give second chance to school leavers so they forget about illegal activities that will jeopardize their future.

During the inauguration of a FODE centre at Mt Diamond Adventist Secondary School in Central Province on Wednesday, July 26, 2023, Prime Minister James Marape called upon the Education Minister Jimmy Uguro and the Secretary for Education Dr Uke Kombra to replicate this initiative of FODE throughout all high schools in Papua New Guinea.

Prime Minister Marape said FODE will provide a second chance education for school leavers and individuals seeking further educational opportunities.

When highlighting the significance of incorporating Christian values and ethics into the education curriculum, Prime Minister emphasized on the need to include practical life skills, such as agriculture, carpentry, and small business, to foster well-rounded individuals.

“I urge the Education Department to expeditiously implement this model across our nation,” said Prime Minister Marape.

 “All 369 high schools in the country should transform into Flexible Open Distance Education campuses.

“I am thrilled to announce that in 2022, we successfully brought back over 80,000 students to school through the FODE concept. This includes Grade 12 students, whose certificates are equivalent to those earned in traditional classrooms.”

Prime Minister Marape said under this innovative approach to establish FODE in all high schools, students living in close proximity to these high schools will have the flexibility to pursue their education beyond the traditional classroom setting. For instance, students who complete Grade 8, 10 and 12 will have the opportunity to continue their studies at their own pace within their communities, rather than being limited to urban centers.

After completing grade 12 FODE, the certificates received hold equal value as the one obtained by students attending conventional classrooms and you are eligible to apply for universities and other institutions, just like their peers attending regular classes, explained PM Marape.

“The Government allocates over K700 million annually for basic tuition, so we encourage parents not to keep their children at home. The responsibility of constructing classrooms and paying teachers lies with the Government. Therefore, we urge all parents to send their children to school,” Prime Minister Marape asserted.

This is to fulfill the Government’s commitment of leaving no one behind.