Fee-free option for dropouts

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THE Government has urged parents to enrol their children who have dropped out of school into the Flexible Open and Distance Education (Fode) this year as it is free.
Education Minister Jimmy Uguro yesterday said no fees would be levied on Fode students and encouraged those who could not make it to the upper grades to enrol at their nearest Fode center.
“Fode is fee-free this year,” Uguro said.
“Parents are not paying.
“The Government has paid the fees.
“This is to address the high turn-over of school dropouts each year.
“The Education Department has been tasked to attach Fode centres to high school and nominated primary schools in districts and provinces.
“A team from the Education Department is working on a plan to have all school leavers absorbed into the system.
“This is so we can reduce the number of student dropouts doing nothing out there.
“As soon as school commences on Feb 1, Fode classes should also commence.”
Prime Minister James Marape said recently that the Government would offer an alternative education pathway to help those who dropped out of school. Uguro said the Covid-19 affected student’s learning last year which resulted in 17,000 students missing out on moving to the next level.
“Fode is free because we are accommodating the school leavers, we are opening up opportunities for those who have been left out, we are taking them on board,” he said.
“The Fode students will study the same contents and they will sit for the same exams.
“So no one should be left behind.
“All students should be educated equally. Last year, there was a big drop so the Government is addressing this issue through Fode.”
Uguro said teachers would be paid an allowance for teaching Fode.
He advised students interested in taking up Fode to check with the Fode centres in the provinces and districts because the Government was committed to starting the fee-free initiative this year.


  • Be specific, Minister for Education. What level of Grade should the FODE enroll the students who have dropped out from schools? Is it the students from the Grade 12 level only? Parents should pay enrollment fees only. While the cost study materials, employment of the Principals (Directors),Teachers, infrastructures ( building of better facilities) should be supported financially by the National Department of Education’s Budget Support for this Program(System). for this system to operate and function effectively the NDOE and PDOE Officers should plan properly and work together to see the program roll out well. Infact the Provincial Department of Education be given the full responsibility to its implementation with logistic, statistics and budget support.

  • One question that comes to mind is: if the Fode centres charge fees, who do we report it to?

  • nogat space ya, build new tertiary institutions, so many grade 12 schools around the country and not enough technical and higher learning institution spaces

  • Can the government build Tertiary Colleges in every province to accommodate the grade 10,12 dropout please rather using FODE system to carter dropouts. We need quality education rather than Quantity.

    Em choll tingting blo mi

  • Giving second chance to our kids. Great initiative by the government as each year a good number of youths roam around doing nothing after they fail to secure good results to continue to secondary schools or secure spaces in tertiary institutions.

  • This is great news to parents and students, but if a FODE Centre may ask for some fees for certain reasons, I believe they will preserver the chance Education. Let’s give hope to young generations and help them find their meaningful wishes and dreams.

  • Thumps up for the WISE DECISION BY THE GOVERNMENT. Provincial Education division and FODE directors of the province should organise and start enrolling Feb 1, 2021.

    • FODE is a very poor organization. The problem is, who will start the organising and enrolling in terms of funding. FODE moves because the students move it and not the Education Department. The Education Minister & NDOE needs to come out clearly.

  • Greatest opportunity. But the effects is FODE has high number of students and less number of teaching resources and facilities including teachers as well.Think about it if we have more enrolment of students.?

  • The free Eduction Policy should not be taken lightly by parents and students as there will be issues faced by FODE provincial centers.
    It’s is welcoming to see the minister encouraging students to enroll at FODE.
    However, material is a big issue for all FODE centres through the country.
    Also FODE is not an institution for drop outs. FODE is best pictured as a place where a life long learner builds a strong foundation for his or her education journey.

  • Completing all level of education is one thing……..and Getting Employed for a Job is another thing…….

    Where will this kids get a Job after completing their educations???? Can Our Government come up with a Bill to Retrench all Public Servant and Privet Sector’s employee reaching the age of 55 year or so that Those kids will know that there is Jobs after schooling ……………………otherwise we will still see people with degrees roaming the streets as usual.

    olsem tintin tasol!

  • Taim kain gutpla tintin ikamap wer ino sa bin tintin o kamap bipo, yupla ol ki bod warriors sa hariap tru lo suggestim gen sampla ol tintin wer ino save mekim sense taim upla yet save pinis wer kain samtin ino bin sa kamap bipo yet. Yupla olgeta mas traim appreciatim kain senis i wok lo kamap bikos pmjm na ol wanwok brothers blo m olsem krama, bird, juffa, lapun niningi, kua, lingstucky, schnaubelt, na ol narapla i bringim up kain tintin.
    Lusim ol narapla uneccessary wish lists for now… Get your children enrolled and take advantage of what is now on offer!
    Thankyou to those who are making positive comments on this initiative.
    God bless PNG

  • Increase number of technical schools and universities and plan to create more jobs.Government has to plan ahead to meet the needs and demand of the growing population.Population is growing in a faster rate while jobs remain unchanged.
    Introducing FODE system of education is okay but it wasn’t planed properly and how much money was budget for this by government. The minister said fees were paid and let us know how much money funded for FODE alone.There’s nothing free.Please explain in detail.what they going to learn and where they going to end up after this school and also how many years they will attend.

  • FODE is under resourced in infrastructure, teaching staff, no TFF and less Government funding. Recently smaller FODE centres have evolved to bridge the gap of school dropouts influx into our communities by rolling FODE into the rural areas by becoming CSCs & RSCs.
    Fees are charged as set by The National FODE whereby we follow. We struggle with teacher’s pay that consumes much of what is collected during the year.
    The Education Minister needs to do a thorough check into the FODE system and see its situation on the ground. FODE must have teachers given by NDOE to make it Free which will take more time to establish.
    On the same note, The National Education Department needs to take the Provincial FODE Centres as well as the smaller FODE Centres (CSCs & RSCs) on board for TFF.
    Otherwise, whatever was published on the 12th January won’t work this year 2021.

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