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Australia Continues Education Support

Australia Continues Education Support
Australian High Commissioner John Feakes, (sitting fifth from left) with participants of the inaugural stakeholders meeting at the Novotel Hotel Suva Lami Bay on August 30, 2018. Photo: Swashna Chand
September 01
10:00 2018


The Australian High Commissioner to Fiji, John Feakes confirmed that Australia would continue to provide targeted support to the country’s education sector.

He said this at the inaugural stakeholders meeting held at Novotel House Conference Centre at Novotel Hotel Suva Lami Bay yes­terday.

“Australia recognises that a country’s econ­omy relies on an educated and healthy work­force, which stems from a robust education system to support its national development and growth,” he said

“Our new programme will focus on im­proving students’ learning environments, strengthening literacy and numeracy in pri­mary education, harnessing inclusive educa­tion, supporting teacher’ work and profes­sional development, and increasing parent and community engagement in school.

“The programme will also continue to strengthen systems in the Ministry, like the Fiji Education Management Information System (FEMIS) to analyse data and make informed decisions on student and school needs.”

Permanent Secretary for Education, Herit­age and Arts, Alison Burchell said they were trying to ensure there was increased co-ordi­nation and complementary work across the sector.

“We work with the Tertiary Scholarship Loans Board (TSLB), the Fiji Higher Educa­tion Commission and now we working more closely with the universities and that’s all part of the process to ensure increase co-or­dination,” she said.

“If we are looking into continuing to grow the economy, we need to ensure the skills we provide and develop in the students are done now for when they go in the workforce.

“We are going to have learning and teaching stream, we going to have school hubs and not divisions and quality assurance.”

Ms Burchell said they would also be looking at planning infrastructure and urban areas which do not have enough space.

“We need more Early Childhood Care And Education (ECCE), primary school and In­dustrial Arts teachers because the economy needs the traits,” she said.

“We need to have our school as a safe envi­ronment and our teachers should not imple­ment corporal punishment to encourage stu­dents to grow and enquire.”

She further said that they do not want teach­ers to say open books on page X or copy down the notes from the board.

“We are also looking at modernising and many schools in the world are using smart screens,” she said.

“It is how we teach and manage students because there are quick learners and slow learners. Library and technology are pillars of producing good education.”

Edited by Jonathan Bryce




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