A study has revealed that there are implications surrounding the Elementary Teacher Training Programs, and changes need to be made to address this.
Among the recommendations suggested, elementary training carried out in provinces should stop, and more emphasis should be given to improve English competency for elementary teachers.
When launching the report on Elementary Teacher Training Reform last Friday, many issues surrounding elementary education were highlighted.
Among them were recommendations to do away with the Mix Mode Distance Training.
This means elementary teacher training under Mix Mode courses taught in provinces for 6 weeks, every 3 years, will no longer be entertained.
PNGEI Director, Dr Zui Neofa, said decisions need to be made, to do away with elementary teacher training in provinces, and allow teachers to be trained in Teacher Colleges.
This move comes after ETTR research findings revealed that elementary teachers trained in provinces were less competent than ones who undertook one year’s training at the PNG Education Institute.
Elementary Superintendent for Teacher Training, Mara Wapa, said improving elementary teacher training is one challenging reform faced by the Education Department, to produce quality teachers annually.
Findings from the ETTR research show that a significant number of teachers trained in provinces never experience key parts of the Mix Mode Curriculum.
Of the 317 elementary teachers interviewed, data shows that 23 % had never been to a Curriculum Cluster Workshop and 24 % had never had supervised teaching.
Also, of the 103 Teacher Trainers interviewed, 69 % reported that they had run no Teacher Directed Training courses in 2013.
The report shows that teacher trainers were poorly equipped with less supervision and funding to carry out their tasks more effectively.
The report suggests that a review of the Mix Mode courses is imminent, and more focus should be given to improving teacher’s English Competency.
The report says most elementary teachers were ‘limited’ users of English.
The ETTR research was funded by the Education Department and AusAID, and was carried out by Volunteer Services Overseas, an international NGO in Madang, last November.
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