Tapo: clean up dept and elevate standards

Letters, Normal

The National, Tuesday November 5th, 2013

 I COMMEND the government for confirming Dr Michael Tapo as the education secretary. 

Education Minister James Marape announced the appointment and asked Tapo to run the department efficiently before advocating for change. 

Tapo demanded efficiency at provincial education board levels.

He assured the minister he  would do his best to provide leadership and deliver to the government’s expectations. 

There is no doubt the government is pumping millions of kina into the education sector, but those investments will yield poor results if the system is not re-focused. 

The system can produce and graduate thousands from schools and tertiary institutions, but if the quality of teaching is poor, the system would produce large quantities without quality. 

The inputs to improve quality teaching and learning must start at the elementary, primary, high school and secondary school levels. 

The quality of teacher planning, teaching and learning interactions must be checked, verified and quality-assured before teaching. 

As a parent, I can see that the school inspections system has collapsed in this country. 

During my school days, school inspectors were the most powerful people in the districts. They would visit schools anytime without warning and would check on teachers, their lessons plans and sign-off before teaching. 

They would visit the classrooms and sit at the back of the class to observe the quality of teaching. 

The system worked to produce quality students who would continue to the next level of education. 

But it seems that this system has broken down because school inspectors, at least where I come from, are never seen. 

I urge the secretary to clean up the department and remove non-performing divisional heads. 

Chalk dust

South Simbu