The lack of a provincial education plan is affecting the growth of the education sector in the East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea.
Schools in the Yangoru-Saussia district made these concerns clear to their local member during his visit recently.
Yangoru-Saussia MP and Minister for Trade Commerce and Industry, Richard Maru, said several new schools in his district are suffering because the province lacks an education plan.
While the government continues to promote its free education policy, problems at the district level are being discovered.
With more children going to school, districts like Yangoru-Saussia have to build capacity by building new classrooms, teachers’ houses and even build new schools to accommodate for the increase in student numbers.
However, TFFs are only given to registered schools. New schools cannot be registered if they are not included in the Provincial Education Plan. The problem is exacerbated if a province does not have a Provincial Education Plan to begin with.
Minister Maru said seven new schools in his district have been in existence for 6-7 years and are still unregistered, because East Sepik Province does not have a provincial education plan. Such a plan needs to be approved by the Provincial Executive Council and endorsed by the National Education Department.
Minister Maru is therefore calling on the East Sepik Provincial Government to get its act together, and develop a Provincial Education Plan if it is serious about the education of its human resources.