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Progress towards EFA goals and targets (1990-1999): cont

e] Gross enrolment ratio – Class 1-6: Gender

Table 13

Male

Female

Year

No in School

Population

Gross

No in School

Population

Gross

Class 1 6

6-11yrs

enrol ratio

Class 1 6

6-11yrs

enrol ratio

1996

60,030

54,456

110.22%

55,636

50,704

109.73%

1997

60,243

54,545

110.45%

55,722

50,729

109.84%

1998

60,236

54,634

110.25%

56,174

50,758

110.67%

Source: Ministry of Education. Department of Statistics Annual Report

Looking at gross enrolment rates for males and females, in 1998 the gross enrolment rate for females is slightly higher that that for males. Previously, in 1996 and 1997, the rates for females were lower than those for males. It would appear that females have improved access to basic education in comparison with males.

f] Gross enrolment ratio – Class 1-8: Gender

Table 14

Male

Female

Year

No in School

Population

Gross

No in School

Population

Gross

Class 1- 8

6-13yrs

enrol ratio

Class 1- 8

6-13yrs

enrol ratio

1996

78,816

73,757

106.86%

73,986

69,067

107.12%

1997

78,917

74,156

106.42%

73,896

69,372

106.52%

1998

78,984

74,569

105.92%

74,366

69,687

106.71%

Source: Ministry of Education. Department of Statistics Annual Report

The gross enrolment ratio for Classes 1 to 8 show that females rate significantly higher than males. This possibly shows that the females have a better retention rate that the males up to Class 8 and Form 2.

Indicator 6: Net enrolment ratios in primary education

a] Net primary enrolment ratio: Class 1-6

Table 15

Year

Total enrolment in

Total population

Net

Grade 1-6

enrolment ratio [%]

Age 6-11 yrs

Age 6-11 years

1996

103,305

105,169

98.22%

1997

104,020

105,273

98.91%

1998

1047,40

105,392

99.38%

Source: Ministry of Education. Department of Statistics Annual Report

b] Net primary enrolment ratio: Class 1-8

Table 16

Total enrolment

Total population

Net enrolment

Year

Class 1-8 6-13 yrs

6-13 years

ratio

1996

138,794

142,824

97.18%

1997

140,540

143,527

97.91%

1998

142,309

144,254

98.65%

Source: Ministry of Education. Department of Statistics Annual Report

Tables 15 and 16 illustrate the net drop in enrolment rate between the year 6 and 8, possibly linked to the examination system.

Indicator 7: Current public expenditure

1] As a percentage of GDP

There is no data to illustrate this indicator

2] Per pupil, as a percentage of GNP per capita

There is no data to illustrate this indicator

Indicator 8: Public expenditure on primary education

Table 17

Year

Public current exp

Total public exp

Total enrol

Total population

Exp primary ed as

on primary ed

on ed.

primary ed.

% of total exp.

1991

$52,387,700.00

$104,752,700.00

50.00%

1992

$55,337,500.00

$112,608,700.00

121397

758275

49.10%

1993

$58,746,900.00

$127,412,800.00

769423

46.10%

1994

$66,606,300.00

$122,531,700.00

121290

783000

54.40%

1995

$65,410,309.00

$128,766,044.00

118631

796078

50.80%

1996

$63,762,686.00

$128,339,710.00

115666

799978

50.00%

1997

$78,731,400.00

$146,577,200.00

115965

778610

53.00%

1998

$79,341,223.00

$152,199,195.00

116410

781223

52.10%

Source: Ministry of Education. Department of Statistics Annual Report

The total commitment of the Government of Fiji to basic education is well illustrated in the above table.

Indicator 9: Percentage of primary school teachers certified to teach according to national standards and

Indicator 10: Percentage of primary school teachers who are certified to teach according to national standards

The academic qualification required to enter primary teacher-training college is Form 7. Most of those who do not have the required qualification are those who have entered teacher training while the qualification for entry was lower, Form 5 or Form 6

Table 18

Number of primary

Certified to teach

Certified %

Year

school teachers

1994

4921

4896

99.50%

1995

4992

4961

99.40%

1996

5021

4983

99.20%

1997

5011

4945

98.70%

1998

5054

4927

97.50%

Source: Ministry of Education. Department of Statistics Annual Report

According to national standards and ministry policies only those with primary teacher-training certificates from a recognised teacher training college are allowed to teach in primary schools in Fiji.

Indicator 11: Pupil teacher ratio

Table 19

Year

Total enrolment

Total number of teachers

Pupil/Teacher ratio

1994

121,290

4921

24.6 to 1

1995

118,631

4992

23.7 to 1

1996

115.666

5021

23.0 to 1

1997

115965

5011

23.1 to 1

1998

116410

5054

23.0 to 1

Source: Ministry of Education. Department of Statistics Annual Report

Indicator 12 Repetition rates by grade

There is no available data to illustrate this indicator

Indicator 13 and 14 Survival rates to Grade 5 / Coefficient of efficiency

This indicator looks at the ideal number of pupil years required to yield a number of graduates from a given pupil cohort in primary education as a percentage of the number of pupil years spent to produce the same number of graduates.

Table 20

Year

Survival Rate to grade 5 Coeff of Efficiency to grade 5 Coeff of efficiency in primary Ed

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

Total

Male

Female

1995

89.50%

85.60%

93.90%

91.10%

87.40%

87.40%

92.60%

89.30%

96.20%

1996

85.40%

83.70%

86.90%

87.90%

87.20%

87.20%

88.50%

97.50%

85.50%

1997

95.00%

95.80%

94.20%

93.90%

93.90%

94.40%

94.40%

93.90%

94.80%

1998

92.10%

91.80%

92.40%

91.00%

91.00%

91.00%

95.50%

93.90%

97.20%

Source: Ministry of Education. Department of Statistics Annual Report

An evident trend is that girls have continued to show better figures in terms of performance in

The figures under review and questions will need to be asked as to the reasons for this trend.

Indicator 15 Achievement

There is no available data to illustrate this indicator

7.0 EFFECTIVENESS OF THE EFA STRATEGY, PLAN AND PROGRAMMES

7.1 The independent system of education practised in Fiji today has evolved significantly from the external colonial system on which it was originally based. Although recognising the foundation of schooling established by our foreign partners the people of the Fiji Islands have, over the years, strived to develop a system of education and a curriculum which is responsive to local needs and which is indelibly stamped with its own local content and context.

7.2 In 1969 the Fiji commissioned Education Report outlined a set of proposed directions for education in Fiji to support the country in its first steps as an independent nation. Reflecting the knowledge, understanding and needs of education at that time the commission provided an invaluable analysis of the most pressing requirements in education and provided impetus to a series of significant reforms and innovation. Teacher training was improved and extended, a locally based curriculum was developed and introduced and a reliance on overseas examinations replaced with an internal system which can hold its own in selection for further education and training, both within the country and abroad.

7.3 Alongside the recommendations of the Education Commission our system of education was also responding to the emerging needs of Fiji as an independent nation. Significant financial resources of government were directed towards the improvement of access to education for all citizens of Fiji, increasing contributions to the basic educational costs for students at both primary and secondary level and a substantial increase in the number of schools to ensure basic educational coverage for all.

7.4 In direct response to community demand we have seen expansion in both early childhood education and secondary school provision. Notable too is the increasing demand for, and provision, of senior secondary education and an increasing emphasis on vocational studies in addition to preparation for higher education.

7.5 Although much has already been achieved the challenges of the next century demand that we continue to respond to changing educational and community needs and seek further development of our system of education.

7.6 Education Fiji 2020 recognises the considerable achievements of the past and seeks to build upon them. It also recognises the importance of keeping pace with the accelerating rate of social and technological change and adapting to the needs of the future. It seeks to build upon the existing strengths of our education system and poses some significant changes. In meeting these changes Fiji will all have to be responsive to new needs, flexible when addressing problems and achieve excellence throughout

Community-Centred Education

7.7 A major feature of the education system in Fiji is community ownership and management of schools. Often in the face of economic hardship and adversity, communities cooperate to provide significant human, physical and financial resources to the education of young people.

7.8 A strength of this system of school ownership has been and continues to be the capacity for schools to be responsive to the local community and environment. It also engenders parental commitment and partnership in education at all levels and demonstrates to young people the exceptional value which is placed upon teaching and learning in the lives of all our citizens.

8.0 PUBLIC AWARENESS NATIONAL CAPACITIES

8.1 The Role of the Ministry Of Education and Technology

The role of the Ministry of Education and technology is to provide the curriculum frameworks, policy guidelines and directions and qualified teaching personnel which will support all schools in the delivery of quality of education for students. The Ministry is also charged with responsibility for ensuring that standards in education are met and maintained and that human, physical and financial resources are appropriately directed.

8.2 The Role of School Management and Administration

Operating within the requirements of the Education Act and the School’s Constitution, School Management and administration support and assist schools in their educational delivery. They have a primary responsibility to ensure the well functioning of financial and physical resources and determine development directions in relation to these resources.

8.3 Educational Principles

Student learning is at the heart of everything we do. All teaching, learning and care are underpinned by the commitment to the following principles:

educational provision

8.4 Educational Values

All educational provision in Fiji is based upon a core of intrinsic and enduring values. These are:

9. PUBLIC AWARENESS, POLITICAL WILL AND NATIONAL CAPABILITIES

Changes and Challenges

9.1 Fiji must enter the new millenium with an education system which will do justice to students, society and ourselves. Worldwide and rapid changes in all areas of our lives, social, demographic, economic, political and environmental require a forward thinking and progressive response from the education sector.

9.2 Education lies at the cross-road between the past and the future. Its role is not only to prepare young people for change but to help determine the changes which will occur.

9.3 There is world-wide recognition and acknowledgment that the nature and provision of education is fundamental to:

It is our responsibility to ensure that the system of education addresses each of these fundamentals.

9.4 As adults, students will need to resolve complex problems and address compelling issues. This will include improving and enhancing the quality of our Fiji island lifestyle in a way which conserves our bountiful environment and which creates a just and equitable society for all Fiji Islanders. Equally, they will need to be informed and active citizens of both Fiji and the world.

9.5 In education, we have a particular responsibility to prepare students for the challenges of the future and to address these challenges in our curriculum, school organization and activities at all levels. This will only be possible through long-term planning and action with the community and other agencies to redefine and refocus educational purposes and goals.

9.6 The changes and challenges which follow have been identified as key issues which are crucial to planning in Fiji education for the coming millenium. They are changes and challenges both local and global which are having an unprecedented impact on all aspects of community lives.

9.7 The Changes Impacting on Education

9.7.1 Changing Population and Demographics:

9.7.2 Social Change

9.7.3 Economic Change:

9.7.4 Environmental change:

9.7.5 Rapid Developments in Technology:

9.7.6 Increasing demands for and of Education:

10. SUMMARY OF PROGRESS

It can be seen that considerable progress has been made over the decade. More students are in aschools at all levels, more communities are participating in the support of their children’s education and more funding is being provided for schooling. Primary education, in particular, has made remarkable progress and the specific efforts to develop early childhood education [funding, teacher training, parental assistance,] are another feature of the decade. In general, however, all levels and types of education have been expanded over the last 10-15 years.

10.1 The Fiji Cabinet in September 1993 noted the concern that the ‘current level of per capita grant to primary schools is so grossly inadequate, that many schools have resorted to levying extra charges on pupils, and that this has led to many children from needy families opting out of school’.

10.2 Cabinet further noted that the current scheme ‘greatly disadvantages island and remote rural area schools’.

10.3 Cabinet endorsed the proposed grant structure and also approved the increase in rate and the funds sought to implement the scheme to provide basic education to everyone in keeping with the World Declaration on Education for All by the year 2000.

10.4 Tuition fee free primary education was introduced for the first time in 1973, where government paid a grant of $F12.00 per pupil enrolled in Class 1. Thereafter, an additional class came into the scheme and it progressed until the 1973 group reached Class 6. In other words, by 1978 all primary school children from Classes 1 to 6 received fee-free education.

10.5 After a lapse of two years, government in 1981 extended the provision to include Class 7 and Class 8 pupils the year after, which meant that in 1982 all primary school children in Classes 1 to 8 received fee free education and this has continued ever since.

10.6 The community acknowledges with gratitude this policy which has benefited so many and assisted parents, but it is been apparent that with he spiraling costs of providing good education, the $F12.00 per child per year is insufficient to cater for basic needs. Hence Cabinet’s revision of the policy in September 1993 mentioned earlier which saw fee free grants to schools as follows :

Ministry spending under the scheme amounted to $F5.2 million in 1994.

10.7 The Compulsory Education Regulation as specified in the Education Act Chapter 262, Section 28 (2) came into force on 20th January 1997.The Compulsory Education Order stipulates that all children of compulsory school age within Fiji shall have compulsory education.

10.8 ‘Compulsory school attendance’ requires that school attendance at Class 1 shall be compulsory for all children turning six years old by 30 June of any year. Children shall be required to remain at school until they have completed Class 8 or Form 2 level education, or at the end of the year the child turns fifteen years of age.

10.9 Under the Compulsory Education Regulations, it shall be the duty of the parent(s) or guardian(s) of every child of compulsory school age to ensure that he or she receives suitable and relevant education by regular attendance at a school unless one of the following prevents the said child from doing so :

  1. there is no school within walking distance of the child’s place of residence
  2. the parent(s) or guardian(s) make(s) other arrangements deemed by the Minister for Education to be suitable and efficient for the education of the child
  3. the child has completed the required levels of primary education
  4. the child is prevented from attending school through sickness or other unavoidable cause(s)

10.10 It is anticipated that it will take four years to fully implement Compulsory Education in all nine Fiji Education districts, where the scheduled implementation phasing has been planned to be as follows :

1997: Ra Education District

Cakaudrove Education District (North)

1998: Eastern Education District

Macuata/Bua Education District

1999: Nausori Education District

Nadroga/Navosa Education District

Ba/Tavua Education District

2000: Suva Education District

Lautoka/Yasawa Education District

10.11 Funding for Compulsory Education has been directed mainly towards the improvement of boarding facilities and general classroom maintenance. For reasons of geographical isolation in the rural areas and daily travel considerations for some children, boarding is seen as a possible if not the best solution to difficulties of access to schools in the affected areas.

10.12 Through Compulsory Education, schools (and children) in the above mentioned areas have benefited markedly with improvements to classroom and hostel facilities which we believe will in some way assist in child retention in schools so as to fulfill the objectives as set out in the Regulation.

10.13 On school staff training and development, strategies outlined as Key Result Area 4 in the Ministry’s 1999 Corporate Plan include :

10.14 Key Result Area 6 on the revision of primary school texts, strategies include work group drafting and school trials/revision. Texts have been revised, printed and distributed to schools.

10.15 On access to quality education with the objective being high levels of literacy acquisition, strategies include :

10.16 On research and review (Key Result Area 7), to meet the objective of responsiveness to changing demands, strategies include the strengthening of research capacity and periodic review and development of curricula. On systems development, the objective is continual development and review of systems to ensure efficiency and that opportunities are maximized to benefit students; and the strategies implemented to achieve these include :


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