ADVOCATES of the Outcome-Based Education (OBE) reform have been challenged to counter public criticisms levelled against them over the new curriculum.
One of the chief advisers of the Government’s National Strategic Plan (NSP) Joseph Sukwianomb said there were growing negative public criticisms which the planners needed to reply to honestly.
Mr Sukwianomb suggested that parents and other stakeholders should be invited at a similar national education conference to properly explain the new OBE system and its benefits for their children.
Principals of four secondary schools presented reports of the successes, impediments and failures of implementation of OBE in their respective schools.
Principal of Jubilee Secondary School in Port Moresby, Benedette Ove, said they had no choice but to implement the new change as it was a government policy.
She said the lack of teaching materials was a major impediment that stalled the effective implementation of OBE.
Likewise, the principal of Ecom High School in Manus province, James Pokasui, said they needed more awareness on OBE for it to be fully appreciated by parents.
His presentation reflected how he successfully integrated agriculture and practical skills using OBE to help the students.
Bobby Delfin, the principal of Vunabosco Agro-technical School in East New Britain province, said teachers, as implementers, needed in-depth in-service courses on OBE to teach.
The principal of Kokopo Secondary School, Daniel Ninkama, said OBE provided opportunities for students to work independently and achieve the desires outcomes.
He said the quality of student and teacher had started to improve as the new initiative provided them greater chance for them to improve.
However, there was the need for more teacher training and basic material supplies to be provided, he said.
The OBE was viewed as a way to empower students to take ownership of learning process in the classroom.
A doctoral student of the Queensland University of Technology, Zui Neofa said it promoted development of positive attitudes between teachers and students towards teaching and learning.
“With OBE, teachers were empowered to do more content research in their subject areas to enhance their teaching.”
However, the greatest impediment noted by teachers was that the programming was onerous with too many resources and teaching materials provided.
Lack of supplementary teaching materials in OBE also hampered effective teaching which caused some teachers to give up.