NATION

Methodist Church To Finance Chaplains In Government Schools

To support this and Government’s cause to introduce counsellors in schools the church’s Davuilevu Theological College will offer a diploma in counselling from next year.
22 Aug 2019 13:49
Methodist Church To Finance Chaplains In Government Schools
Reverend Carmen Scheuerman of Davuilevu Theological College speaking during the Methodist Church in Fiji and Rotuma Annual Conference (Bose Ko Viti) at Centenary Church in Suva on August 21, 2019. Photo: Ronald Kumar

The Methodist Church in Fiji and Rotuma will be financing its own chaplains in Government schools.

It follows a decision from the church annual conference (Bose Ko Viti) yesterday where they agreed to pay for chaplains in Government schools and also for their accommodation.

To support this and Government’s cause to introduce counsellors in schools the church’s Davuilevu Theological College will offer a diploma in counselling from next year.

Reverend Carmen Scheuerman from the United Methodist Church, Georgia said this course was also offered at the University of the South Pacific with a total of eight subjects to pass.

Reverend Scheuerman said Davuilevu Theological College was offering six subjects and would include two other legal courses.

After the course, participants will earn a diploma and that will qualify them to carry out counselling in schools.

A criterion for school counselling is for the counsellor to have a diploma or degree.

Meanwhile, the church president, Reverend Epineri Vakadewavosa, has thanked Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and his Government for allowing schools to have chaplains.

At the  Bose Ko Viti, the delegates were briefed by the church education secretary Waisake Ravatu on school chaplaincy.

Decisions reached for Government schools:

  • Salaries will not be paid by the government from 2020; if we want our presence to continue then we (the Church) must pay them,
  • Vacate current quarters by end of the year,
  • Chaplains, should they meet the counselling qualifications, may apply for the schools counselling post when advertised.

For non-Government schools:

  • Will no longer be paid from the school grant from 2020,
  • May continue using quarters should school management to agree to continue.

As for the appointment for heads of faith-based schools, the Bose Ko Viti has agreed for the Ministry of Education’s Open Merit Recruitment System (OMRS) that include experience with demonstrated excellent quality performances and the ability to uphold and foster the ethos of the school.

The Bose Ko Viti requested that appointments of the school heads be made in consultation with the school management committee.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

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