By Stanley Ove Jr – EM TV, Port Moresby
The Mt Diamond Adventist Secondary School, located along the Magi Highway in the district of Kairuku-Hiri of the Central province, is a Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) run school established in 1972, that accommodates both day and boarding students.
This year, the school’s student populace had increased with 797 pupils enrolled, causing a great imbalance to the ‘student to teacher’ ratio and a strain on the school’s ability to cater for all students.
School facilities, such as the student mess, are unable to meet the demands of the increased pupil populace. Water and electricity supply are unreliable and the road linking the school to the main highway is in a very disturbing state.
Water and electricity, are two ongoing issues that the school has had to endure for years now; where students and teachers continue to struggle to go by their daily activities and duties, the best they know how under such disheartening circumstances.
With 300 boarders this year, the school is preparing for a further increase in the boarding intake and is now building two student-dormitories to house over 400 students; the construction of the dormitories should be completed by mid-year 2015.
Mt Diamond Adventist Secondary, like many other semi-rural and rural schools, is faced with problems that need to be addressed before the new academic year begins.
This has prompted the school administration to call upon interested (and willing) stakeholders to assist the school to build a larger student mess.
Head Teacher, Martin Seve expressed his concerns by stating that the government must uphold its commitment to maintain the Government-Church Partnership. He said that the church had played its part in establishing the school and now the government must maintain it.
Despite the obstacles faced, the school has accomplished much; setting milestones in the education sector. It was the first school in Papua New Guinea to trial the online examinations concept in June of this year, which was done so, exceptionally well.
The school also ventured into electronic-online learning using Future School, software designed to teach numeracy and literacy for students in grades one to twelve. Teachers had undergone week-long training to facilitate the using of the Future School program, particularly useful for rural schools in PNG.The program is specifically made to support students to learn at their own pace and is accessible anywhere in the school through the local area network (LAN).
For now, as the school year draws to an end, the administration however, is racing against time to prepare the institution for next year and remain hopeful that their cries for support will be heard.