A LOT has been said about the outcome-based education and its effects on students.
One thing I will like to outline is the amount of content knowledge an individual student achieved or has when moving from upper primary to lower secondary.
As a teacher in a lower secondary school, I realised almost 90% of students in a class do not know simple topics being taught to them.
Try asking the following questions to a Grade Nine or 10 student:
* What is the provincial capital of Southern Highlands province;
* What is the capital of New Zealand; and
* Who is the education minister.
These are simple questions and I will tell you no more than five students in a class of 50 in rural high schools will raise their hands.
If you were to ask the same questions 10 years ago, nearly all the students in a class of 50 would joyfully sing the answers out.
It is worse when it comes to adding or subtracting in decimals and there is a high rate (90%) of spelling errors and punctuation.
Now the big question is are the teachers in the upper primary schools really working?
Are they finding it tough to implement the OBE curriculum?
More important, have they assessed their students critically?
They must set the foundation or ground work, otherwise, we are heading for trouble.
The Government must come out and speak clearly on OBE.
Is it concern with ensuring PNG citizens JUST read and write or does it want its citizens to learn more so as to make them as knowledgeable and competent as others in the rest of the world?
Right now, PNG literacy rate is among the lowest in the world.