THE quality of Grade 12 leavers coming out of secondary schools continues to drop each year, Divine Word University must president Father Jan Czuba says.
Czuba said that was why the university had to step up to ensure the weaknesses of the students it enrolled were addressed for the good of the country. Czuba revealed that when opening the university’s staff induction week at the Madang campus yesterday in preparation for the start of the new academic year next week.
He said selectors from the university and other institutions of higher education were once again appalled to find large numbers of Grade 12 leavers in 2013 applying for tertiary studies had poor grades.
Czuba, the chairman of the Papua New Guinea Vice Chancellors Committee, said the situation was not getting better and the DWU had a moral obligation to the nation to help in addressing it.
He said the reasons for the dire situation were many and included the recently aborted Outcomes-Based Education (OBE) system and socio-economic problems.
Czuba urged his staff to pay extra attention to the welfare of the students coming to enrol there.
He warned deans, heads of departments and lecturers not be complacent and ensure students attended lectures, carried out assigned tasks and behaved at all times.
He said it was irresponsible for academics not to be concerned about students who did not attend classes or submit assignments and tasks.
He said it was not good enough for DWU staff to view a student as an adult who knew the right things to do “because the reality is different”. “We can’t say it is up to the students to behave and meet academic requirements. It is our responsibility to assist them because they are coming with weaknesses from their secondary schools and communities,” he said.
“We are morally obliged to ensure students are properly groomed and educated at DWU.”
He said students were not “clients” but were part of the university community and all staff
must ensure their welfare was prioritised.
Czuba said on a macro level to address quality issues, the Office of Higher Education had recently assigned DWU to lead the bachelor of primary education programmes, while the University of Goroka would take charge of secondary teacher education programmes.
He said DWU considered that the OHE had given it an important responsibility and university was committed to delivering high quality primary teacher education where graduates could become better primary teachers.
Czuba said to help in the delivery of quality primary teacher education programmes, the OLSH Kabaleo Teachers College in East
New Britain was now an amalgamated campus of DWU and joined St Benedict’s in Wewak, while Holy Trinity Teachers College in Mt Hagen planned to do so in the near future. The National
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