A Joint Implementation Committee meeting was held this week to oversee the education powers and functions transfer from the education department to the Autonomous Bougainville Government.
Whilst commending his current and former department staff, AGB and Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for their contributions in the functions transfer, he also expressed concern that the two day meeting is the first after two years and attributed the lack of meetings and consultations to funding and leadership challenges. However, he was pleased that the reports he received from were promising and that work on the transfer of powers and functions was continuing.
Picture from James Tanis from http://bookgainville.com/about-us/
Full Name of School: Nariana Elementary School: Metonasi Class B :Region: Nagovisi, Via Panguna ,Central Bougainville
He noted that while there are some powers and functions be transferred there are some that remain to be transferred due to lack of capacity in the ABG education system to absorb and implement successfully. The powers and functions that remain to be transferred are to do with Inspections, Curriculum and Examinations.
Dr Kombra pledged the department’s support to the ABG Department of Education and called on both entities to maintain regular communication.
“We need to be mindful of some national government policies being implemented by the department. One of them is the Tuition Fee Free Policy. The intent of this Policy is to ensure that every child attends school and remove the burden of school fees from parents.
I am aware that Bougainville charged parents fees this year which you can do but school fee is the main barrier that stops children from attending school.”
The Secretary also mentioned the need for the committee to establish a joint monitoring group to review and monitor the implementation of the powers and functions that have been transferred and the ones that remain.
The Bougainville education department registration policy, enrolment policy, regulation of pre-schools in Bougainville, transfer of remaining TSC powers and functions to Bougainville, and status of the Bougainville Technical College under the Bougainville Act 2013 and the PNG Education Act were discussed at the two day meeting.
Meanwhile, the newly appointed Secretary for Bougainville Education Department Dr Justin Kehatsin said that his department is working together with the Bougainville Education Minister in implementing the transferred powers and functions.
One of the challenges Dr Kehatsin mentioned is the mushrooming of early childhood centres in Bougainville. He added that a standard curriculum is needed that will work well for both Bougainville and PNG.
He reaffirmed Bougainville’s commitment to ensuring the transfers.
Note from Bougainville News : Hopefully now we can get some funding support for