By JOE GURINA
GOD has not created a single failure in any human being that has seen the first light from out of a mother’s womb.
The Bible says every human being is created in His likeness or image and bestowed the power to prosper in life.
That conviction has motivated an educationist to ensure that every child who walks out his institution would never consider himself or herself a failure again.
“So I lived up to that assertion from the Almighty to make sure that there is hope at the end of the tunnel through my institution,” says John Sekewa, founder and director of the Juha College TVET Secondary School.
“I established the school for two purposes, which are to set a pathway for a child’s education endeavour and also give a second chance to students that cannot make it through the Government’s education system.
“The school is a private permitted school registered with the Department of Education.
“The Vision 2050 plan clearly indicates that every Papua New Guinean must be educated by 2050 under the education framework plan of the Government.
“And as such I am contributing to the Government’s development plan,” Sekewa said.
“We are helping the Government to achieve Vision 2050. “We see that the Government is still attempting to build more secondary schools throughout the country and as such mine and many other permitted schools in the country are established with an aim to help the Government achieve its Vision 2050 plan.
“Despite the challenges faced, it is for the Government to see and assist permitted schools to provide better education to fulfil its ambition,” Sekewa said.
“See, for instance in my school, the classrooms are overcrowed and there is not enough desks for the students so there is no choice, they sit on the floor for the sake of learning.
“So the Government really needs to direct its focus on privately-run permitted schools who are doing their best to keep failures off the street and give them an opportunity.”
Juha College was established as a project under the Umbrella Benefit Sharing Agreement (UBSA) signed in Kokopo prior to the start of the PNG LNG Project a few years ago.
Its establishment followed from a successful proposal made by Sekewa, landowner from the Juha Petroleum Development Licence (PDL) area.
He started operating the school using the Salvation Army facilities at Boroko. The school graduated its first Grade 10 and 12 students in 2014 with excellent results.
He then moved locations to Hohola the following year, however suspended the operations of the school the following year because of administrative issues.
“I never gave up hope and this year I have the school back on track and we are operating at 9-Mile opposite Rouna Quarry next to the Bomana junction.
“It was the desire to continue on with my ambition and I am confident that the school will go a long way from here to produce students with flying colours once they graduate,” Sekewa said.
He will soon relocate the school to a permanent campus at 17-Mile along Sogeri Road.
He is appealing to the LNG developers ExxonMobil and Kroton to support the school since it is a project established under the LNG agreement.
The school offers technical courses apart from secondary schooling to up skill students in technical fields. It offers certificate courses in motor mechanics and driving lessons to help students find employment once they graduate.
Japanese and Bahasa language classes are also offered.
The school is also a pilot project for KAB (Know about Business) which is an entrepreneurial education project run by the Government-owned Small Business Development Corporation (SBDC).
The school currently has 98 students, 62 in Grade 9 and 36 in Grade 10. It caters mainly for students living in the vicinity of 9-Mile, Bomana and Erima.
- Joe Gurina is a freelance writer.