OVER half of the total number of Grade 8 students in Madang who are eligible to continue to do Grade 9 will not do because there are no spaces available in existing schools.
Madang provincial education director Moses Sariki said a good number of Grade 8 students who completed their primary education would not continue because there was not enough space in the existing nine high schools in the province.
Sariki said 7392 Grade 8 students who sat for exams last year met the required percentage to continue Grade 9 but only 2619 would get a space and 4773 would struggle to find other avenues to continue their education.
“This is like 35 per cent of those who met the requirement will continue and 65 per cent required continuing will not because of no space. This is a big concern for the provincial education board,” he said.
Sariki said a submission and a power point presentation were made to Madang Governor Jim Kas and members of the provincial executive council (PEC).
He said he was advised by PEC to convert the submission into an information paper for PEC’s approval but there was no response until now.
Sariki said he submitted for each district to have a high school each to cater for the big number of students missing out on Grade 9 spaces.
“We understand that our MPs get K10 million each year, out of that 20 per cent belongs to education, we don’t understand how they use it,” he said.
Sariki said the seven MPs of the province, including the governor, were using the K2 million education grants following their own agendas and were not liaising with the provincial education board to address the concern.
It is understood that most MPs were supporting schools in building teachers’ houses and school buildings, most of which were for primary schools.
“The question is where will those primary school students go? The MPs are supporting and improving primary schools only, but where will the Grade 8 at those primary schools go when they complete their primary education?” Linda Keno, a former teacher, said.
Keno said all MPs and the governor should take the concern seriously and divert their K2 million education grants to the provincial education board to upgrade the existing senior primary schools into high schools while they made plans to construct a few more secondary schools.
She said Madang could overcome that problem with each MP allocating K2 million each to make a total of K14 million to start off with in upgrading the first two or three existing primary schools into high schools. The National
Papua New Guinea education news services
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